Mozambique confirms 1st cholera death as cases above 500

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BEIRA, Mozambique (AP) – Mozambican authorities have announced the first cholera death among cyclone survivors in the hard-hit city of Beira as the number of cases rises to 517.

Broadcaster TVM on Sunday night cited national health official Ussene Isse for the new toll.

Cases of the acute diarrheal disease have risen dramatically since the outbreak was declared on Wednesday. Cyclone Idai severely damaged the water system for Beira, a city of 500,000, when it hit on March 14.

The World Health Organization has said some 900,000 cholera vaccine doses are set to arrive on Monday.

Cholera is an acute diarrheal disease that is spread by contaminated water and food. It can kill within hours but is relatively easy to treat.

The overall cyclone death toll in Mozambique is now 518.

A mother bathes her baby in a bucket at a camp for displaced survivors of Cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, Sunday, March, 31, 2019. Cholera cases among cyclone survivors in Mozambique have jumped to 271, authorities said. So far no cholera deaths have been confirmed, the report said. Another Lusa report said the death toll in central Mozambique from the cyclone that hit on March 14 had inched up to 501. Authorities have warned the toll is highly preliminary as flood waters recede and reveal more bodies. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)
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