Source: Agence France-Presse (AFP), Date: 18 Nov 2010
WASHINGTON — The deadly cholera epidemic in Haiti is virulent and unpredictable, and repeated outbreaks could wreak havoc for years to come, US officials and health experts warned on Thursday.
“This strain of cholera seems to be more virulent than normal strains,” Thomas Adams, the special US coordinator for Haiti, told reporters.
“The disease fooled us,” added Adams, saying a cholera outbreak was feared likely in the impoverished Caribbean nation following January’s deadly earthquake, but most expected it to break out in the capital Port-au-Prince.
More than 1,100 people have died from the diarrhea-causing illness since it emerged in central and northern parts of the country last month, with more than 18,000 people infected.
Nov 15, 2010 – DQE, a leader in mass care and emergency response supplies, is assisting aid agencies in finding the appropriate resources and supplies for cholera patient care beyond makeshift solutions. (PRWEB) November 15, 2010.
According to the Pan American Health Organization, cholera is one of the leading causes of death in the world, with an estimated 3 million to 5 million cholera cases and 100,000 to 120,000 deaths every year worldwide. Outbreaks of cholera have killed over 540 people in disaster stricken Haiti and United Nations figures show that Nigeria is experiencing its worst cholera outbreak in two decades with more than 1,500 people having died from cholera since January 2010.
DQE, a leader in mass care and emergency response supplies, is assisting aid agencies in finding the appropriate resources and supplies for cholera patient care beyond makeshift solutions. DQE has designed and is manufacturing a cholera bed for cholera patient care needs around the world.
Cholera causes profuse vomiting and diarrhea that quickly sickens patients to the point where they are unable to get out of bed to care for their personal needs. The cholera bed delivers comfort to patients in need of cholera treatment and assists healthcare professionals attending to these patients. The cholera bed has a hole in the midsection of the bed that, when combined with a biohazard waste container, allows human waste to be contained and disposed of in an efficient manner. The vinyl fabric deck of the bed can be easily cleared, discarded, and replaced for quick clean up and sanitation. The disposal of the fabric deck and the biohazard waste bag assists in sanitary measures for cholera prevention. Additional information can be found on the cholera bed by going tohttp://www.dqeready.com/cholera.
19, 2010 – Port-Au-Prince, Haiti (CNN) — The deadly cholera epidemic
that has claimed more than 1,100 lives in Haiti has now spread to yet another
vulnerable community: the largest prison in the country.
“The situation is becoming very worrying in Port-au-Prince National Prison,” said a statement from Riccardo Conti of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
The organization said 30 new cases of cholera have been reported in the last three days and seven inmates have died. It fears that the death toll could significantly rise in the facility that houses 2,000 inmates.
“It’s overcrowded and it can spread very, very fast,” said Olga Miltcheva, the UCRC’s spokeswoman in Haiti. “Our teams are supporting the authorities in the prison. They have been working several days there from morning to night.”
19/11/2010 – The Government of Haiti established an emergency response center at the National Palace to better coordinate a national response to the cholera epidemic. The center is composed of representatives from key departments, including communications, health, and finance, National Directorate of Water Supply and Sanitation (DINEPA), and representatives of UN agencies and bilateral organizations. The aim is to streamline the activities and information for a multisectoral response.
Cholera continues to affect seven departments in Haiti and their communities. Partners in Health/Zanmi Lasante reports a growing number of cholera patients in the Artibonite, and the departments of Central and Western, with a total of 7.159 patients in health facilities in the Artibonite/Central Plateau.
For the metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince, an additional number of cases has been notified: Carrefour, Cité Soleil, Delmas, Kenscoff, Petion Ville, and Tabarre. The increase in the number of cases in Cité Soleil is particularly worrisome because of its overcrowded conditions, poor hygiene and lack of access to drinking water. Medecins du Monde (MDM)-Canada operates three mobile clinics serving a population of 45,000 people in 14 camps in Cité Soleil, as well 55,000 people living in areas surrounding the camps.
Many Haitians work in the Dominican Republic and because cholera infections often do not show symptoms, the water-borne disease could easily cross the border, WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl told a U.N. news briefing in Geneva.
“It is completely expected that there will be cases in the Dominican Republic. We are seeing the first signs of these cases and we are working with the government of the Dominican Republic to prepare,” Hartl said. He estimated the number of infections as “still in single digits, probably.”
More than 1,110 people have died in Haiti from the cholera outbreak, and more than 18,000 have become sick.
The disease is treatable with oral hydration salts — or home-made solutions of 1 liter of water, 1 spoonful of salt and six spoonfuls of sugar — but can be deadly if not caught early.
WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier said that in the Dominican Republic better sanitary conditions meant the diarrhoeal illness should be less dangerous. “We don’t expect it to be as high as it is in Haiti,” he said of the severe illness and death rate.
Health officials in Florida have reported one confirmed cholera infection — in a resident who visited family in Haiti — but officials say the risk of a U.S. outbreak is minimal.
Voice of America, Nov 19, 2010 – UN aid agencies say access to health facilities and rapid treatment are key to preventing the spread and escalation of deaths from cholera in Haiti. The aid agencies warn violence is jeopardizing their ability to help the victims.
Higher number of causalities than reported – Latest figures on the cholera epidemic from the Haitian Ministry of Public Health are more than 1,100 deaths and nearly 18,400 hospitalizations. But, UN aid agencies note these statistics are several days old and the true number of deaths and hospitalizations are probably higher.
Cholera is confirmed in seven Haitian regions. Only three remain free of the disease. World Health OrganizationCommunications Officer, Christian Lindmeier has just returned from two weeks in Haiti.
Dan Campbell, Web
Environmental Health at USAID
1611 North Kent St., Suite 300
Arlington, VA 22209
Environmental Health at USAID: http://www.ehproject.org
Indoor Air Pollution Updates: http://iapnews.wordpress.com
Sanitation Updates: http://sanitationupdates.wordpress.com
Urban Health Updates: http://urbanhealthupdates.wordpress.com
Cholera Google Group: http://groups.google.com/group/cholera-control
Household Water Treatment Google Group: http://groups.google.com/group/household-water-treatment