Cholera cases in Iraq top 1,200: ministry

Iraqi medical staff work in a vehicle during a vaccination campaign against cholera at a makeshift camp housing displaced Iraqis who fled the violence in the Iraqi city of Ramadi, on the southern outskirts of Baghdad, on September 21, 2015 (AFP Photo/Sabah Arar)
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Baghdad (AFP) - The number of confirmed cases of cholera in Iraq has risen to 1,201, the health ministry said Wednesday of an outbreak that started along the Euphrates river last month.

"There are 1,201 confirmed cases as of October 7, 2015," the health ministry said in a statement, adding that most patients had recovered.

It said there had been only one confirmed death from the disease, in Babil province south of Baghdad. Health officials had reported four suspected deaths west of the capital last month.

Health Minister Adela Hmoud is holding consultations with the regional office of the World Health Organization (WHO) to enhance cooperation in responding to the outbreak, the statement said.

Health officials said in September when the outbreak was first reported that the cases of cholera were partly the result of poor water quality caused by the low level of the Euphrates.

The previous confirmed cholera outbreak in Iraq killed four people in 2012 in the northern autonomous region of Kurdistan.

After a short incubation period of two to five days, cholera causes severe diarrhoea, draining the body of its water.

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