Cholera Outbreak Ravages Port Sudan Amidst War

With the nation still engulfed in conflict, Port Sudan, which is located on the Red Sea coast of Sudan, is dealing with a cholera outbreak that is being made worse by a shortage of medical supplies.

At least 1,000 people are now housed in a shelter for the displaced that was once a university residence for students.

Julia Adam, who contracted cholera a month ago and lost one of her two daughters, is one of the displaced people.

According to Julia, who moved from the Sudanese capital Khartoum, the cleanliness in the shelters leaves much to be desired.

“We are really afraid, and we work on cleanliness, but not everyone (among the displaced) is keen on it. There is a lot of dirt behind the place. I can clean in front of my place and make sure my children bathe. As you can see, these flies will not disappear unless the place becomes clean,” added Julia Adam.

Over, 8000 suspected cholera cases, including 224 associated deaths, have been reported since the country declared a cholera outbreak in Gedaref on 26 September.

The disease has spread to 46 localities in nine states as of December 2023.

“Currently, 70% of the health system in Sudan is out of service as a result of wars and as a result of the destruction of health care facilities. We are facing a great task and a great challenge in providing service to all of Sudan. Now all of Sudan is in Port Sudan (referring to the displaced) and this is a great challenge. The service delivery times are limited and not suitable for this number of displaced people. There is a shortage in the supply of medicines. We suffer greatly in providing treatment for people with all diseases and with cases of severe diarrhoea. There are many challenges, we are doing what we can, and we hope that (international) organisations will help us more so that we can tackle these infections and can control them,” said Dr. Ahlam Abdullah, director general of Red Sea province health sector at the Ministry of Health.

After months of hostilities between RSF commander Gen. Mohammed Hamdan Dagalo and military head Gen. Abdel-Fattah Burhan, Sudan’s war broke out in the middle of April.

According to U.N. data, over 7 million people were pushed from their homes, with over 1.5 million of them seeking safety in neighboring countries.

Written by PH

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