SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic – The cholera epidemic may be making a comeback in the Dominican Republic.
Health officials are investigating what could be a new cholera outbreak in the northern Dominican Republic, where one woman died and more than 200 people have sought medical attention, Health Minister Bautista Rojas said Thursday.
He cautioned that only six of the more than 200 cases have been confirmed as cholera, including that of a 64-year-old woman who died on Wednesday. The remaining patients exhibit cholera symptoms but are awaiting confirmation through lab tests, he said.
The outbreak occurred in the northern town of Tamboril, where heavy rains damaged water and sewer pipes earlier this month.
Bautista said the outbreak is under control, and government officials said they are disinfecting potable water with the maximum amount of chlorine allowed.
The first cholera outbreak in the Dominican Republic occurred in late 2010 with more than 22,500 cases and 163 deaths reported. The number of cases had been dwindling since August 2011.
The neighboring country of Haiti, where the outbreak originated, is still struggling with cholera, which has killed more than 7,000 people and sickened 530,000 more, according to Haitian health officials.
Based on reporting by the Associated Press.