At that time, the outbreak exceeded 200,000 suspected cases, increasing at an average of 5,000 a day. In just a few months, cholera had spread to almost every governorate in Yemen. Since the oubreak began, more than 1,300 people had died – one quarter of them children – and, at the time of this writing, the death toll was expected to rise.
Cholera is an acute diarrhoeal infection caused by ingestion of food or water contaminated with the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. Cholera remains a global threat to public health and an indicator of inequity and lack of social development. Researchers have estimated that every year there are roughly 1.3 to 4.0 million cases, and 21,000 to 143,000 deaths worldwide due to cholera.
Cholera is an easily treatable disease. In most cases, those infected will have no symptoms or mild symptoms, and can be successfully treated with oral rehydration solution. Severe cases, however, will need rapid treatment with intravenous fluids and antibiotics. Provision of safe water and sanitation is critical to control the transmission of cholera and other waterborne diseases.
SBCC campaigns are implemented to promote the adoption of appropriate hygiene practices such as hand-washing with soap, safe preparation and storage of food and safe disposal of the faeces of children. Funeral practices for individuals who die from cholera must be adapted to prevent infection among attendees.
During outbreaks, campaigns can be organized and information should be provided to the community about the potential risks and symptoms of cholera, precautions to avoid cholera, when and where to report cases and to seek immediate treatment when symptoms appear. The location of appropriate treatment sites should also be shared.
This Trending Topic provides tools for health communication as well as samples of SBCC materials from projects worldwide.
Photo: A young girl in Kolkata, India, stands by her family's cholera-contaminated water supply. © 2009 Chelsea Solmo, Courtesy of Photoshare
- Provide a comprehensive overview of the outbreak response
- Pinpoint the main strengths and weaknesses of the response
- Improve preparedness for and response for future outbreaks
This fact sheet provices basic information about the history of cholera, its symptoms, treatment, epidemiology, ans surveillance.
This fact sheet offers basic cholera prevention messages for health communication projects:
This OCV Communication Framework aims to support cholera-prone and outbreak countries to develop their national and sub-national communication strategy for OCV uptake and cholera prevention, control and management.
An online course which covers several aspects of emergency risk communication.
These tools and templates are part of a practical toolbox for communicating with stakeholders and the public about water advisories. They are tools that can help guide pre-event message development.
The Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Improvement Training Package is intended to support the training of local outreach workers and their subsequent work in communities to promote improved water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) practices to reduce diarrhea.
The Training Package consists of three separate parts:
This video, which can be used on smart phones, describes several techniques that can be used to help prevent cholera, including methods of treating water, washing of hands, and seeking medical advice if/when one has the symptoms of cholera.
This is a module created to improve preparedness for and response of communities in countries at risk of a cholera epidemic.
This two minute video offers answers to basic questions about cholera.
- What is cholera
These are generic posters created for Africa, Haiti, and Southeast Asia, which can be used to help educate people about good hygiene practices, methods for disinfecting water, and caring for family members who may be at risk of contracting cholera. They are designed for all audiences and the graphics have been made regionally specific.
This 4.5 minute video was produced in response to the cholera epidemic in Haiti in 2010, following that country's devestating earthquake. The video features a young boy who helps a health worker save his father and then guides his village in preventing cholera from spreading.
This toolkit aims to provide UNICEF Offices, counterparts and partners with one source of information for prevention (or risk reduction) and control of cholera outbreaks, preparedness, response and recovery – including integration with regular/development programs.
This fact sheet offers information about cholera prevention related to sanitation, food and water. It also covers signs and symptoms, treatment, and treatment of water.
This training manual for cholera prevention and control is intended for community health workers (CHWs) to help their communities prevent cholera illnesses and deaths.
This campaign is part of the Support for Service Delivery Integration (SSDI)-Communication project, implemented by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP) and partners in Malawi from 2011-2016.
These toolkits were produced and used as part of the Moyo ndi Mpbamba project in Malawi to guide the community mobilization process in target districts.
These radio spots are part of the Moyo ndi Mpanba campaign to promote health behavior change across the six focal health areas.
These radio spots are in Chichewa and cover these topics:
As part of Tanzania's program to increase infection prevention and control throughout the country, an SBCC strategy was developed. Part of this strategy was the development of a handwashing poster for display.