Diarrhoea Outbreak In Haiti Kills 138, World Vision Responds

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23rd October 2010, 08:00am - Views: 919





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For immediate release

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Diarrhoea outbreak in Haiti kills 138, World Vision responds

An outbreak of severe diarrhoea has hit the Central Plateau region of Haiti, with reports of up to 138 people dead and several

hundred more hospitalised.

Hospitals in the region have been overwhelmed by sick patients, with overcrowding forcing many people to wait outside.

Samples from the dead are being analysed to determine the cause. UNICEF and international agencies are in emergency talks to

coordinate responses.

World Vision Haiti has urgently sent medical supplies to assist in the response to the sick and to support hospitals and clinics.

"Hundreds of litres of rehydration fluids, water treatments, medicines and hospital supplies were transported to Central Plateau

today," said Dr. Estrella Serrano, World Vision’s Emergency Response Health and Nutrition Manager.

"We need urgent intervention by the Government of Haiti and UN agencies.

“This situation is extremely worrying. Reports say many of the casualties showed few symptoms and in some cases died within 24-

48 hours,” he said.

World Vision is sending WASH and Health teams to the region to do assessments.

Head of World Vision’s Water and Sanitation Hygiene sector, Theo Huitema, said that with deaths occurring so rapidly, the water

contamination must be severe.

"World Vision is taking preventative steps immediately in all camps in which it is working in Port-au-Prince. This includes soap

distribution, increased hygiene promotion and extra chlorination of water.

“We have to react immediately with this type of thing and hygiene promotion and soap are two of the most crucial prevention

measures you can do quickly,” he said.

Spokespeople available for interview

Dr.Reginald Lubin, World Vision Haiti Earthquake Response, Hygiene Specialist + (509) 3702 3859

Media Inquiries

Haiti

Mary Kate MacIsaac, World Vision Haiti Earthquake Response, Communications Manager + (509) 3702 3887 or Michelle Rice,

Communications + (509) 3701 4934

Australia

Dominic McInerney, 0428 584 809






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