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Like Lagos, French island reports cholera outbreak; nearly 200 cases recorded

The French authorities have come in for criticisms over the failure to provide access to drinkable water to prevent a cholera epidemic in its overseas territory.

Like Lagos, French island reports cholera outbreak, 200 cases recorded

In its weekly update of Friday, June 21, 2024, France’s SPF public health agency announced that the cholera caseload in Mayotte is nearly 200.

Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection triggered by the consumption of food and/or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae.

It can spread easily in unsanitary conditions, causing vomiting and muscle cramps.

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The French agency said as of June 18, 193 cases of the epidemic were reported, of which 172 were locally acquired, while 21 were in people infected abroad in the neighbouring Comoros archipelago and countries on the African continent.

Mayotte is an overseas department and region and single territorial collectivity of France, located in the northern part of the Mozambique Channel in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Southeastern Africa.

The first locally acquired case of cholera on the island, which is home to around 320,000 people, was reported in late April.

Two casualties have been recorded since the beginning of the epidemic with one of them being a three-year-old girl.

The French authorities have come in for criticisms over the failure to provide access to drinkable water to prevent a cholera epidemic in its overseas territory.

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SPF warned there was a particularly high risk of transmission in disadvantaged neighbourhoods as long as access to drinkable water and proper sanitation remain unsatisfactory.

Like Mayotte, Nigeria's commercial capital and most populous state, Lagos is also battling a cholera outbreak.

The bacterial disease has also spread to neighbouring Ogun and a few other states in the West African country.

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Providing updates on the epidemic on his X on Friday, the Lagos Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi, said fatalities had risen to 24, with 417 suspected cases and 35 confirmed cases so far.

The state government had earlier advised citizens to seek medical attention immediately if they experience symptoms such as watery diarrhoea, vomiting, abdominal pain, general malaise and fever.

It said cholera treatment was provided free of charge at all public health facilities as it reiterated its commitment to ensuring that residents receive quality and affordable health care.

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