PORT-AU-PRINCE - HAITI reported seven new deaths on Saturday from the cholera outbreak, bringing to 337 the number killed by the diarrheal disease since it first appeared earlier this month.

With 4,764 people infected and under medical treatment, the death rate has nevertheless slowed from earlier this week, officials said.

Health authorities are battling to contain the disease, fearing it could spread dramatically in the capital Port-au-Prince where 1.3 million people displaced by January's catastrophic earthquake are still living in squalid camps.

The source of Haiti's first cholera outbreak in decades remains unclear, although the UN peacekeeping force Minustah is probing claims that its septic tanks leaked into the Artibonite River and contaminated it with fecal bacteria.

The outbreak's epicentre is the coastal town of Saint Marc, which is situated at the mouth of the Artibonite, 96km north of Port-au-Prince.

Haiti cholera toll hits 337