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    Death toll rises in Haiti cholera epidemic


    by ODN


    Medical workers in quake-hit Haiti are fighting to stem a cholera epidemic that has killed nearly 200 people and sickened more than 2,000.

    Although the main outbreak area is north of Port-au-Prince, which bore the brunt of the January 12 earthquake, humanitarian agencies are on high alert to prevent the disease from spreading to crowded survivors' camps in the capital.

    The cholera epidemic was the worst medical emergency to strike the poor, disaster-prone Caribbean nation since the devastating earthquake that killed up to 300,000 people.

    It was also the first cholera epidemic in Haiti in a century, the World Health Organization said. But no confirmed cases were reported in Haiti's rubble-strewn capital, where 1.3 million quake homeless are living in tent cities.

    Health teams were closely monitoring the survivor camps and oral rehydration liquids were being prepared for quick use.