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WHO Urges Scaled-Up Effort To Halt Expanding Zimbabwean Cholera Epidemic

The World Health Organization called for urgent action to tackle a persistent and increasingly deadly cholera epidemic in Zimbabwe following the release of figures that show the number of cases topping 60,000 with 3,161 deaths and those figures still rising rapidly.

A WHO statistical update through Thursday showed a cumulative 60,401 cases over the past six months. Some 7,835 cases have been added in the past five reporting days alone.

Lisa Schlein reported for VOA from World Health Organization headquarters in Geneva.

From Zimbabwe, meanwhile, WHO Representative Dr. Custodia Mandhlate told reporter Sithandekile Mhlanga of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that her agency will be asking donors next Thursday in Geneva for expanded funding to battle the entrenched epidemic.

In one positive development, doctors and nurses who walked out of state hospitals late last year over poor pay and dismal working conditions have started coming back to work after receiving a government commitment to pay them in U.S. dollars.

But Hospital Doctors Association Chairman Amon Siveregi told reporter Chris Gande that the main reason for their return to work is the desperate humanitarian situation.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe…