Stamford, Conn. – June 22, 2023 – Americares is preparing to dispatch a mobile medical team to western Haiti to provide care in communities isolated by the recent flooding and earthquakes. The health-focused relief and development organization plans to have a team of nurses and a physician providing primary care services to children and adults in the Grand’Anse department starting next week. Americares is launching the operation at the request of Haiti’s Ministry of Health and Population.
Earlier this month, heavy rainfall and massive flooding swept across Haiti, damaging or destroying more than 14,000 homes and claiming 51 lives, according to the Pan American Health Organization. Just days after the flooding, back-to-back earthquakes struck the same region, exacerbating the situation. In Grand’Anse, where the Americares medical team will be working, the United Nations reports 13,000 people are displaced.
The heavy rain and flooding affected five hospitals and has raised concerns about access to clean water, sanitation and health care services. There is also concern about the spread of cholera; after three years with no reported cases, Haiti has seen a resurgence of cholera since October. The flooding, earthquake damage and health concerns come amid widespread food shortages and gang violence that’s led to a humanitarian crisis throughout the country—the poorest in the region.
The Americares mobile medical team plans to operate in the Grand’Anse department for three months to provide primary health care services in communities isolated after the earthquake and flooding damaged a main bridge near Jérémie, displacing thousands of people. All of the medical professionals are local Haitians working under the direction of an Americares physician based in Haiti. Americares also plans to provide emergency funding for medicine and medical supplies to a pediatric hospital in Port-au-Prince, as well as provide additional support for cholera prevention.
“The destructive flooding, and earthquake damage in western Haiti, have cut off access to health services in many communities. There are pregnant women who cannot get to a hospital to deliver their babies and people in desperate need of medicine,” said Americares Director of International Emergency Response Cora Nally. “Our mobile medical team will be there to provide essential—potentially lifesaving—health care throughout the recovery.”
Americares has worked in Haiti since the 1980s, supporting health centers and local organizations with donated medicine and medical supplies in response to emergencies and ongoing needs. Over the years Americares has responded to the 2010 Port-au-Prince earthquake, Hurricane Matthew in 2016, the 2021 earthquake and the COVID-19 pandemic in Haiti.
Americares responds to more than 30 natural disasters and humanitarian crises worldwide each year, establishes long-term recovery projects and brings disaster preparedness programs to communities vulnerable to disasters. Since its founding more than 40 years ago, Americares has provided $22 billion in aid to 164 countries.
Donations to Americares Worldwide Disaster Relief Fund will support the organization’s response to this emergency.
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