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The UN endorses a new cholera vaccine to combat an increase in cases, according to ET HealthWorld



UN approves an updated cholera vaccine that could help fight a surge in cases, ET HealthWorld

In a recent development, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has approved a new version of a cholera vaccine, Euvichol-S, manufactured by EuBiologics. This approval comes as a response to the increasing cases of cholera globally, which has led to a depletion in the vaccine stockpile. The Euvichol-S vaccine is a simplified formula that is cost-effective and can be produced at a faster rate than the previous version. Clinical trials in Nepal have shown promising results in preventing the diarrheal disease.

The approval from WHO now allows donor agencies like Gavi and UNICEF to purchase the vaccine for distribution in poorer countries. UNICEF’s supply division director, Leila Pakkala, expressed that this approval will increase vaccine supplies by more than 25%. Gavi estimates that approximately 50 million doses will be available for the global stockpile this year, an increase from 38 million doses last year.

Cholera, an acute diarrheal disease caused by contaminated food or water, primarily affects areas with poor sanitation and limited access to clean water. Without proper treatment with intravenous fluids and antibiotics, severe cases of cholera can be fatal, resulting in a death rate of up to half of those infected. Since January, there have been over 824,000 cholera infections and 5,900 deaths worldwide, with the highest number of cases reported in the Middle East and Africa.

The approval of the Euvichol-S vaccine by WHO is seen as a significant step in addressing the global cholera crisis, particularly in vulnerable communities. However, there is still a need for additional resources and vaccines to combat the ongoing outbreaks and prevent further fatalities. The WHO has highlighted the impact of warming temperatures on cholera outbreaks, exacerbating the situation and leading to the highest death rates in a decade.

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