Dominican Republic`s cholera death toll climbs to 36

Santo Domingo (ANTARA News/AFP) - The number of cholera-related deaths in the Dominican Republic jumped from 23 to 36 over the past two weeks, while the number of infections grew from 1,288 to 1,563, health officials said Thursday.

In the last week, 132 people were infected and two people died from the disease, including a minor, according to the Health Ministry.

Another 143 were confirmed infected in different parts of the country the week before.

Due to the increasing number of cholera deaths and infections, the Health Ministry said local agencies were boosting prevention and control measures.

Cholera is an intestinal infection caused by ingestion of contaminated food or water. It can strike swiftly, causing intense diarrhea, vomiting and nausea that leads to severe dehydration and sometimes death.

The Dominican outbreak, first detected in November 2010, is believed to have come from Haiti, where at least 5,332 people have died from the disease and 310,000 have been infected.

At its peak, dozens of people were dying each day in Haiti, as the disease flared in tent camps set up after last year`s devastating earthquake.

A UN investigation concluded that the disease in Haiti bore striking similarities to a South Asian strain but did not confirm the widespread belief among Haitians that it came from Nepalese peacekeepers.

(Uu.SYS/C/H-AK/C/H-AK) (*)