Cholera has reached Port-au-Prince, the Haitian health ministry reported Tuesday.

The first confirmed case of Cholera in the country’s capital city was a 3-year-old boy who the ministry said had no contact with anyone to the north from the Artibonite region, where the outbreak of the waterborne disease began. By day’s end news reports said 73 people in the city were being treated for the disease.

The death toll since Cholera was first reported in Haiti last month is now at least 583.  The disease has sickened an estimated 9,123.

The BBC reported that an official with the Pan American Health Organization (Paho) said authorities are bracing for a long epidemic likely to infect tens of thousands of people.


“The disease now has a foothold in Haiti’s river system,” the official said.