Vast amounts of standing water in Houston and other hurricane-flooded areas are dangerous not only because of toxins. The water is a dangerous breeding ground for mosquitoes that transmit Zika.
Surviving a hurricane in poor countries such as Haiti is no guarantee of surviving the secondary problem of cholera.
Foreign aid can harm as well as help.
Cholera is caused by a lack of access to clean drinking water and unhygienic conditions. Misuse of antibiotics makes it difficult and expensive to treat outbreaks.
Despite being so small they can't be seen with the naked eye, pathogens that cause human disease have greatly affected the way humans live for centuries.
Here we explore our past and present struggles with four of the most significant infectious diseases human beings have faced, and some of the progress we've made in prevention and treatment.
Already one of the world's most urgent humanitarian disasters, the situation in Yemen is only getting worse.
Cholera kills thousands every year but is treatable if it is caught early. Understanding how El Niño shifts cholera risks in Africa can help countries prepare for outbreaks and save lives.
More than 788 health facilities have been destroyed in parts of North-Eastern Nigeria captured by Boko Haram insurgents, crippling health services in the area.
By not acknowledging what Haitians themselves think they need, the UN is failing to sort out one of its worst ever blunders.
Developed and developing countries alike struggle with water quality problems. For World Water Day, a look at the challenges – and some potential solutions – to better treating wastewater.
Cholera is estimated to infect between 3 to 5 million people globally, every year.
A lack of decent sanitation and clean drinking water are fertile ground for a cholera outbreak.
As East Africa becomes warmer, the threat of climate sensitive diseases such as malaria, Rift Valley Fever and cholera is increasing.
After admitting that its peacekeepers brought the disease to the country, the organisation must make financial amends too.
Africa should focus on the feasible reforms of the UN and de-emphasise its demand for improved representation on the Security Council voting reforms, given the complex politics around these issues.
It has long been known that UN forces brought disease to the country in the aftermath of an earthquake, but how can amends be made?
The ‘functional immunity’ granted to UN officials made good sense when the body was founded after World War II. But as its organisational functions have expanded, so has this immunity.
The UN might now apologise for poisoning scores of Roma people in Kosovo – but its role in Haiti's cholera disaster still goes unacknowledged.
Unless drinking water and sanitation infrastructure are improved, cholera could remain in Haiti indefinitely.