Lebanon reports 80 additional confirmed cholera cases
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The Lebanese Minister of Health, Dr. Firas Al-Bayed, announced that “80 new cases of the epidemic have been registered, which raises the cumulative number of registered cases to 169,” pointing to “the registration of cases in new areas, including Zgharta and Zahle. Hosh Al-Amara, Qab Elias, Tamneen Al-Tahta, Bashmrah and Qleiat.”
He added: “The biggest burden falls on Halba Governmental Hospital, and there are cases in Tripoli and Minya hospitals, and there are 33 cases in hospitals, some of which are confirmed and others are awaiting results, of which six are in intensive care.
He continued, “There is an accelerating spread of the epidemic in Lebanon. It is true that the vast majority of patients are among the displaced, but we are beginning to notice an increase in cases among Lebanese citizens.”
With regard to the transmission of infection, the Minister of Public Health considered that “there is no doubt that water pollution is one of the main reasons for the spread of the epidemic, as the tests conducted by the Ministry of Public Health recorded many sources of contaminated water, including what is used in some camps or homes, as well as Water pollution has been recorded in springs, including the Rihaniya spring in the north and the Ain Faour spring.
He also noted that “the use of contaminated vegetables also contributes to the spread of the epidemic.”
The Minister of Public Health focused on “the necessity of securing clean water as a basic factor that helps limit the spread of the epidemic,” noting “the efforts made by the Ministry of Public Health in cooperation with the Ministry of Energy and Water, where UNICEF has secured about 100,000 liters of mazut for use in operating water pumping stations.” In the regions of the North, North Bekaa, Bekaa and some wastewater treatment plants to reduce the burden of polluted water.” But the White Minister, on the other hand, indicated that “communication with water pumping stations, whether in northern Lebanon or the Bekaa, showed frequent power cuts, which greatly limits the quantities of clean water that reach users.
In addition, water stagnation for long periods in these stations as a result of long-term power cuts to the stations may expose them to pollution, which may contribute to the spread of diseases when pumped back to users.
He stressed the need to secure electric power for pumping stations to secure clean water, because the stations mainly feed large and medium cities, and it is very important to limit the spread of the epidemic in these areas.