Emergencies preparedness, response

Cholera in Angola

10 May 2006

Angola has reported a total of 30612 cases and 1156 deaths (case fatality rate (CFR) 4%) from 19 February to 8 May 2006. Of these cases, 50% have occurred in Luanda province (CFR 1%), 25% in Benguela province (CFR 7%), 10% in Malanje (CFR 6%) and Kuanza Norte (CFR 5%) provinces. A further 5 other provinces have reported between 3 and 155 cases with a CFR ranging from 1 -33%.

The peak of the outbreak occurred 3 weeks ago in Benguela and Bengo provinces. However, in the other provinces the outbreak has just started or is still spreading.

The Ministry of Health has established a provincial task force, including WHO, UNICEF, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Médecins sans Frontières (Spain, Holland, France and Switzerland) and Médecins du Monde (MdM), to plan and coordinate the response to the outbreak in Luanda Province.

WHO is assisting the task force and has provided 7 tons of emergency supplies for the immediate response. Furthermore, an epidemiologist, a public health specialist and a water and sanitation engineer have been dispatched to support control activities in the field.

Control activities are difficult in view of the precarious water and sanitation situation, particularly in urban areas and Luanda Province.