Moscow: Cholera and poliomyelitis
are likely to be the most dangerous infections that will
threaten Russia in 2011, an official said.
"We believe that the main challenges from infections are
the consequences of the cholera epidemic in Haiti and the mass
outbreak of poliomyelitis in Tajikistan," chief sanitary
doctor Gennady Onishchenko told a news conference yesterday.
He cited the latest cholera epidemic statistics: of the
114,497 people struck by the disease, 58,000 were hospitalised
and another 2,532 died.
Onishchenko criticized the Haitian health care system.
"Today, any country with at least an average level of
health care can prevent cholera. If detected on time, cholera
responds to treatment well, provided the medical authorities
launch sanitary and preventive measures.
When they lose 2,500 citizens, that means trouble," he said.
He also dwelt on the situation in the Dominican Republic:
335 cholera cases, 27 patients dead.
"We are on the threshold of the first cholera pandemic in
the 21st century. There were seven cholera pandemics in the
20th century. The preliminary information we have indicates
that the strain, which has spread there, is resistant to
"This resistance can be acquired artificially, or as a
result of the use of antibiotics, where cholera treatment was
"Our tourists are fond of holidaying in the Dominican
Republic. It contradicts a healthy lifestyle," Onishchenko
said noting that he meant dramatic changes in temperatures,
when people living in cold climate in one part of the world go
from winter into summer time. Even astronauts have a less
rigorous training," the chief sanitary officer said.
However, he said he had given up on the "can`t care less"
defiant negligence of Russians, who tend to recklessly walk
into dangerous situations as onlookers and will never take