Relief officials are sounding an increasingly loud alarm about the cholera epidemic that has hit Zimbabwe with ever-increasing severity over the past seven months, saying that not only has the disease not been controlled, but it is spreading more rapidly than ever. 

The World Health Organization on Wednesday said 3,712 people had died from the disease since it took hold in Zimbabwe in August, with 78,882 cases recorded through Tuesday.

Tuesday in Johannesburg, the international aid group Medicins Sans Frontières ? French for Doctors Without Borders ? issued a report saying the cholera epidemic has reached unprecedented levels with 4,000 cases treated in the first week of February.

MSF International President Christophe Fournier told reporter Patience Rusere that one case is being reported every minute as the epidemic spreads rapidly in rural areas.

Correspondent Sylvia Manika of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe reported from Harare that a particularly severe outbreak in Chiweshe, Mount Darwin and Shamva North in Mashonaland Central province has claimed at least 190 lives in the past two weeks and that local and international relief workers have stepped up efforts to contain the disease.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...