Haiti: Cholera Found In Port Au Prince

(2PM EST – promoted by Nightprowlkitty)

As feared, Cholera appears to have arrived in Port Au Prince, Haiti.  A first confirmed case has now been reported: the 3 year-old child with the disease had not left Port Au Prince.  This outbreak is a major threat to millions of people.  The report:

Haiti’s cholera outbreak has spread to the capital Port-au-Prince, putting the lives of millions of homeless people at risk.

Health authorities said a three-year-old boy who has not left the city in the last year had caught the disease….

More than 100 suspected cases of cholera among residents of the capital are being investigated.

The outbreak has already killed at least 544 people in other areas of Haiti, according to health ministry executive director Gabriel Timothee.

He said many of the patients in hospital in Port-au-Prince are believed to have recently arrived from the Artibonite Valley, an agricultural area where more than 6,400 of Haiti’s known 8,138 cases have been recorded.

The water-borne disease had never been reported in Haiti before its appearance last month.

The earthquake in Haiti demolished much of the weak infrastructure of that impoverished country.  Even before the earthquake, sanitation and drinking water and food were major concerns.  The earthquake made conditions far worse, evicting thousands form substandard housing and pushing them into make shift tent and shack encampmets in the capital.  Then Tomas arrived.  The storm brought intense rain and flooding, which seems to have overwhelmed the city’s remaining sanitation systems.  The street reek.  Excrement is everywhere. It was only a matter of time in these conditions before the disease emerged.

Haiti’s suffering continues.  And now, there is an even greater risk to the lives of Haitians in the capital.  As I wrote just yesterday,

Two things are clear: all US aid that was appropriated for Haiti, more than a billion dollars, needs to be freed up and delivered there. And it is also a good time to make contributions to organizations that aid Haiti. I recommend Doctors Without Borders.

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simulposted at The Dream Antilles and DailyKos

4 comments

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    • davidseth on November 9, 2010 at 4:30 pm
      Author

    And may the people of Haiti be well.

    Thank you for reading.

  1. Thanks for updating the situation, which is beyond dreadful and heart-breaking.

    It appears Sen. Coburn made a formal denial to Sen. McConnell, Senate Minority Leader, of “holding” up the funds for Haiti (Oct. 7, 2010).  

    Yet, in reading the letter, some of the language indicates he put the bill in a very difficult position, thus, putting it in abeyance!:

    . . . . .The Haiti Empowerment, Assistance, and Rebuilding Act authorizes $500 million in aid to Haiti for Fiscal Year 2011. The legislation as written does not reduce spending elsewhere in the government to pay for this aid. I feel that any future levels of aid to continue the reconstruction and rebuilding after the earthquake that hit earlier this year must come from eliminating or reducing lower priority programs at the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). At this time, when our nation is projected to add more than a trillion dollars a year to our already unsustainable $13.4 trillion national debt, it is irresponsible to authorize any new spending that is not paid for because the end result will be a lower standard of living for the United States and an inability for our nation to assist others when disasters and other crises occur in the future. . . . . .

    Despite the fact that more than 10 weeks have passed since this bill was passed into law the Secretary of State appears to have fulfilled that condition only this week. While I am disappointed that executive branch bureaucracy seems to have delayed the ability of Haitians to begin long-term reconstruction, I am pleased that the aid that Congress appropriated months ago can finally move forward.

    I will continue to work with the sponsors of S. 3317 to eliminate lower priority programs at the State Department that can and should be ended in order to pay for long-term reconstruction aid to Haiti. Thank you for protecting my rights regarding S. 3317, the Haiti Empowerment, Assistance, and Rebuilding Act of 2010.

    On “holding” a bill, see here.

    So it seems the State Department is now holding up the funds!  Whatever!!!!  All this haggling over a bill to help Haiti, while their circumstances worsen each day and the people are simply dying.  Shouldn’t we then be calling the State Department demanding that it release some of the pledged monies to Haiti?  

    I hope everyone will give something, no matter how small.  Anything!!

     

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