After Hurricane Maria, Could Puerto Rico be at Risk of Cholera?

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Photo Above: A nurse in a darkened hallway at Hospital El Maestro, which has been on 
emergency generator power since Hurricane Maria.

In the aftermath of hurricanes Irma and Maria, Puerto Rico is dealing with greater areas of standing water and higher temperatures, both of which mark conditions conducive to waterborne diseases such as cholera. Puerto Rico has not seen a fatal outbreak of cholera since 1856, but the uniquely devastating events from the 2017 hurricane season are raising questions of whether the island’s current bacterial strains of Vibrio cholerae could turn fatal in the coming months.

Sam Underwood

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