Haiti Cholera Response Shameful

A UN spokeswoman has blasted the response to an appeal to counter the deadly cholera epidemic in Haiti as “shameful” with the world body receiving only a quarter of the funding it needs.

“Out of the $174 million, the UN has only received $44 million or 25 percent of the funds we asked for, although (the situation) is of the utmost urgency,” the spokeswoman for the UN Organisation for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), Elisabeth Byrs, said.

“It’s not moving. It’s shameful that we should have so little money for an illness that currently kills in a flash because people don’t have rehydration salts.”

Cholera can swiftly dehydrate patients without treatment for potentially deadly cases of diarrhoea.

The disease has left 3,333 people dead and infected 150,000 since it suddenly appeared in the quake and storm hit Caribbean nation last October, according to figures given by Haiti’s health ministry last week.

The Pan American Health Organisation warned in November that up to 400,000 people could fall ill with cholera in a year.

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