Cholera outbreak hits eastern China

At least 30 people in eastern China have been stricken by cholera in recent weeks, with unsanitary food conditions believed to be behind the outbreak, state press said Sunday.

Twenty people remain hospitalised with the disease, which has spread in Mengcheng county of Anhui province over the past two weeks, the Beijing Times reported, citing local health officials.

Ten other patients have already left hospital, the report said. No deaths have yet been reported in the region.

Cholera causes serious diarrhoea and vomiting, leading to dehydration, and can be fatal if not treated quickly.

The Anhui outbreak is believed to have been caused by unsanitary food, the report said.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cholera is surging again in parts of the world, especially in Africa as well as in impoverished nations like Afghanistan, Nepal and Papau New Guinea.

"Cholera, contrary to other illnesses, can generate panic because the death can take place in several hours," Claire-Lise Chaignat, of the WHO, said earlier this month.

"It's a disease of the poor, a sign of a lack of access to clean drinking water and of poor hygiene."

Chaignat claimed the spread in cholera across the world could be partly linked to climate change.