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AmeriCares Responding to Cholera Outbreak in Haiti

  • October 25, 2010

Lifesaving aid distributed throughout the weekend to health facilities treating people suffering from the outbreak; additional shipments being prepared

STAMFORD, CT – AmeriCares, a global health and disaster relief organization, is preparing an airlift of lifesaving medicines and medical supplies to combat Haiti’s cholera outbreak.  The shipment, bound for Port-au-Prince, will contain more than 50,000 pounds of IV solutions in addition to antibiotics, rehydration fluids and other aid to help fight the disease.  Currently, there are over 3,300 confirmed cases and more than 250 deaths.

“People infected with cholera, a waterborne bacteria that spreads through contaminated water, can rapidly lose body fluids and become dangerously dehydrated,” explained AmeriCares Medical Director, Dr. Frank Bia, an expert in infectious diseases.  “Without treatment, people can go into shock from low blood pressure or die, often within hours of becoming infected.”

AmeriCares has been delivering critical assistance from its warehouse in Port-au-Prince since Friday and throughout the weekend, providing relief to health care providers in the Artibonite valley as well as the capital city. As part of AmeriCares emergency response and preparedness plans, oral rehydration fluids, IV solutions, antibiotics and other aid were pre-positioned in its Haiti warehouse, ready to be mobilized in the event of such an outbreak.

In addition to the airlift, AmeriCares is preparing a sea shipment of medicines and medical supplies to help replenish health facilities in order to treat more people should the epidemic spread to Port-au-Prince.  Since the earthquake struck on January 12, 2010, AmeriCares has delivered and distributed more than $30 million in medical assistance to over 65 health care facilities.

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