North Korea is now battling an outbreak of an intestinal disease, amid a surge in COVID-19 infections and chronic food shortages, according to state media.
Medical crews and epidemiological investigators have been sent to a province in the notoriously isolated country. So far, about 800 families have been treated for what is being referred to as an “acute enteric epidemic in South Hwanghae Province.
South Korean officials are speculating it could possibly be typhoid or cholera.
State news agency KCNA reported 19,310 new fever cases on Sunday. Still, it did not indicate how many people included in the figure tested positive for COVID-19. The country has seen more than 4.6 million people with fever symptoms since acknowledging a coronavirus outbreak last month.
The outlet also detailed the steps North Korea is taking to mitigate the spread of the disease. Efforts include quarantine, screening of residents, and special treatment and monitoring of the most vulnerable populations.
A national “Rapid Diagnosis and Treatment Team” is working with local health officials to keep farming in the central agricultural region on track.
According to CNN, they are also working to disinfect sewage and other waste to ensure the safety of drinking and household water.