[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 May 2006, 15:23 GMT 16:23 UK
Worst cholera outbreak in Angola
Doctor treating cholera victim (Pic: Paco Arevalo, MSF)
The outbreak is linked to poor water supplies and inadequate sanitation
A cholera epidemic in Angola has now killed more than 1,200 people in the past three months - the worst outbreak ever recorded in the country.

About 35,000 people have fallen ill, half of them in the capital, Luanda, aid group Medecins sans Frontieres and the World Health Organization say.

The first cases of the current outbreak were found in Luanda slums in February.

Despite an oil-fuelled 20% economic growth rate, Angola's crowded slums lack adequate water and sanitation.

The disease has also been reported in 11 of the country's 18 provinces. Easier movement of people between the cities and the countryside since the end of the war four years ago, is one of the reasons for the spread of the epidemic. MSF says between 500 and 700 new cholera cases, and an average of 10 deaths, are being seen every day.

"These figures are likely to be underreported," MSF's country co-ordinator for Angola, Richard Veerman, told the BBC.

"Many people are likely to be remaining at home and dying at home without the opportunity to come to a treatment centre."

Over the past 10 years, Angola has suffered only minor outbreaks of cholera, mostly in the slums of Luanda.

How the disease has swept across the capital

Medical notes: Cholera
08 May 03 |  Medical notes
Timeline: Angola
08 Dec 05 |  Country profiles
Country profile: Angola
28 Jan 06 |  Country profiles

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific