Cholera and sanitation

Cholera is typically a water-related disease, primarily affecting developing countries with poor levels of improved water supply, sanitation coverage and solid waste management. It becomes a major concern in urban areas where it can spread rapidly due to the fact that the population density is higher than in rural areas. In Latin America for example, where two-thirds of the population are urban dwellers, cholera outbreaks have been widespread, severe, and frequent, over the last decade.

Progress in sanitation coverage and safe drinking water supply has been extremely slow, leaving the Millennium Development targets a distant vision. If the rates of the 1990s persist, in rural areas of developing countries, the entire population will finally have access to safe drinking water only in 2070, and the sanitation coverage will be completed only in 2130.

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