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Honduras: Rotavirus outbreak in Atlántida department

Rotavirus (diarrheal) outbreak in Atlántida department (north); take food and sanitary precautions

TIMEFRAME expected from 6/8/2017, 12:00 AM until 6/15/2017, 11:59 PM (America/Tegucigalpa). COUNTRY/REGION Atlántida department

Event

An outbreak of a diarrheal disease is ongoing in Atlántida department, located in the north of the country (capital La Ceiba). The local health authorities declared an epidemic on June 6 after some 500 cases had been reported in the previous weeks. The most hard-hit municipalities are La Ceiba, Tela, San Francisco, El Porvenir, Jutiapa, and La Masica. The outbreak is believed to be caused by the rotavirus, transmitted via contaminated food and drink. It is unclear if running water sources are contaminated.

Context

Even during normal periods tap water should not be considered safe for consumption anywhere in Honduras. According to one study, eight out of every 100,000 deaths in the country are due to contaminated water, which can carry a number of other diseases including diarrhea-inducing bacteria, hepatitis A, parasites, and carcinogens.

Advice

To reduce the risk of contracting the rotavirus, wash hands regularly, drink only bottled or purified water (no ice), and avoid any foods that cannot be thoroughly cooked, peeled, or disinfected (berries, ice cream, etc.). 

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