Cholera Epidemic Outbreak Hits Quake Ravaged Haiti

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Cholera Outbreak Hits Quake Ravaged Haiti

A cholera outbreak has Haiti’s government and aid workers and organizations fighting today to contain the cholera epidemic. It has killed at least 140 people and has affected more than 1500, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Cholera is a virulent diarrheal disease, which typically comes from contaminated water or food containing the cholera bacteria and isn’t not usually contagious. Outbreaks can be multiplied exponentially for those living in unsanitary and crowded conditions, almost identical to those that Haitian’s now are experiencing. This is the first cholera epidemic in over a century for the Caribbean island nation, whom seems to get more than their fair share of disasters, and it is also the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere. One aid worker from the main hospital in Saint-Marc describes it as a “horror scene.”

The Red Cross and other organizations participating in humanitarian services are rushing in doctors, medical supplies and clean water to Saint-Marc in the Artibonite region of Haiti, north of Port-au-Prince which is the primary outbreak zone. There are no confirmed or reported cases coming from the nations capital city of Port-au-Prince at this time. Aid workers are being confronted by villagers from the Saint-Marc region begging for clean water, as the region has received thousands of refuges from the January 12th earthquake. The region is also Haiti’s central breadbasket. The January 12th quake killed roughly 300,000 people and injured many thousands more, and displaced and left homeless most people.

With concerns over the spread of the deadly cholera disease to Port-au-Prince, the nations capital, which is housing an estimated 1.5 million refuges in tents and tarpaulins, an emergency prevention program is being put into place, according to Health Minister Alex Larsen. This disease is extremely dangerous, as it can kill in the first three hours of getting it, due to the fact that once it starts, it won’t stop. The prevention plan is normal sanitary measures, and includes urging the people to wash hands regularly, boil all water, not eat raw vegetables, and boil all food. He also urged the refuges to refrain from drinking from, or bathing in local rivers. Aid organizations are rushing in clean water and medicines to the affected areas.

Immediately following the earthquake on January 12th, there were widespread fears of just such an epidemic breaking out, but the massive international humanitarian effort has prevented any such serious outbreaks of these infectious diseases in the capital. Health teams are now monitoring the refuge camps and have oral re hydration liquids at the ready for quick use for those infected by the cholera outbreak in Haiti. They are also concerned at the pace that it spread, as hospitals in the nation were supplied with 10k water purification tablets, and oral re hydration salts. There are also concerns about the impoverished population in that they had no immunity to the cholera bacteria that has struck Haiti this week.

Most people are still homeless in the nation, as housing is very hard to come by, seeing as more than 1.5 million people have lost their homes, and foreign relief workers take up a good portion of the available housing. On top of that. most people don’t have enough money to rent the ones that are available, as rents have doubled and tripled for even the low end housing. One senator has placed his 3 bedroom home with a nice view on the market for 15,000 a month, and finding anything similar in nature to that for under 5,000 a month is considered a true bargain. If you want to buy here, the price of a 3 bedroom with a guest apartment is available for 900,000 US dollars. Come on man, talk about price gouging, and ethics, this is a crime against humanity for cryin out loud! To take advantage of poor, virtually helpless people is criminal in nature, and those that are benefiting from other peoples pain and suffering should either be made to live with them in squalor and take there chances, or be put in jail forever. With the cholera outbreak in Haiti too, those poor people need all the help they can get. The organizations whom are helping still need money, so if you can spare a few bucks, these people truly need our help! You can donate to The Clinton Foundation Here or test HAITI to 20222 to donate $10 dollars. Another good relief organization, Mercy Corps has posted their achievements in Haiti here, and you can donate to them here or call 1-888-256-1900, or send a check to Mercy Corps Haiti Earthquake Fund; Dept NR; PO Box 2669; Portland, OR 97208.

If donating cash isn’t a favorite of yours, you also can donate actual goods here at the The Goods: Help Send Relief To Haiti, an online store run by Causecast and HuffPost Impact. Here you go online and purchase products for organizations that are directly used on the ground in Haiti. Donations to this cause have already topped $100,000 dollars. Lets help these people, as it is the ethical and right thing to do, and the cholera outbreak in Haiti is just another heartbreaking event for these already hurt, weakened and sick people.

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