CHOLERA (Syllabus: GS Paper 3 - Sci & Tech)

News-CRUX-10     22nd August 2023        
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Context: Since 2017, a spike in conflict and displacement in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is pushing children into the worst cholera crisis, warns the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

  • In 2017, cholera spread across Congo, including the capital, Kinshasa, leading to almost 55,000 cases and more than 1,100 deaths.
  • Cholera is mainly linked to insufficient access to safe drinking water and inadequate sanitation. 

Cholera disease

  • About: A life-threatening infectious disease and a public health hazard.
  • Caused by: An acute, diarrheal illness caused by infection of the intestine with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae.
  • Symptoms:
    • Profuse watery diarrhoea
    • Vomiting
    • Leg cramps
  • Transmission:
    • A person may get cholera by drinking water or eating food contaminated with the cholera bacterium.
    • The disease can spread rapidly in areas with inadequate treatment of sewage and drinking water.
  • Vaccine:
    • Currently there are three WHO pre-qualified oral cholera vaccines (OCV), Dukoral, Shanchol, and Euvichol-Plus.
    • All three vaccines require two doses for full protection.
    • It is not covered in Universal Immunization Programme (UIP).
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