Infection Control for Cholera in Health Care Settings

Front line healthcare worker wearing a protective mask and washing her hands.

Healthcare providers should take precautions to prevent the spread of cholera in clinical settings:

  • Chemoprophylaxis with antibiotics is not indicated for healthcare providers
  • All staff should be trained on cholera prevention and infection control measures, such as handwashing and safe disposal of human waste
  • Handwashing with soap and clean water or 0.05% chlorine should be done before and after each patient contact
    • If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol , or if neither are available, 0.05% chlorine solution
  • Several chlorine solutions can be used for surface disinfection (solution calculations are based on using unscented household bleach with 5–6 % active chlorine):
    • 2% chlorine
      • Made by mixing 3 parts water and 2 parts bleach (or 400 ml of bleach in 1 litre of water)
      • Used for disinfecting vomit, feces, and corpses
    • 0.2% chlorine
      • Made by mixing 9 parts water and 1 part bleach (or 40 ml of bleach in 1 litre of water)
      • Used for cleaning floors, boots, personal protective equipment (gloves, aprons, goggles), bedding, latrines, dishes
    • 0.05% chlorine
      • Made by mixing 9 parts water and 1 part 0.5% chlorine solution (or 10 ml of bleach in 1 litre of water)
      • Used for bathing soiled patients, handwashing, laundry