Hurricane Matthew Leaves at Least 5 Dead in Haiti, Cholera Surge Feared

Posted on: October 5th, 2016 by ABC News No Comments

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) —  Hurricane Matthew ripped through Haiti as a Category 4 storm with 145 mile per hour winds Tuesday, leaving villages flooded, roofs ripped from houses, and at least five people dead.

Matthew’s ravaging winds and torrential rainfall flooded the southern part of the country, leaving behind devastating conditions for hundreds of thousands of residents, and concerning medical officials about an outbreak of Cholera.

Mourad Wahba, the U.N. secretary general’s deputy special representative for Haiti said in a statement that “Haiti is facing the largest humanitarian event witnessed since the earthquake six years ago,” referring to an earthquake in 2010 that left some 200,000 people dead.

A spokesman for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon added in a statement Wednesday that at least 350,000 people need immediate assistance in Haiti, and the full extent of the hurricane’s impact remains unclear.

During #HurricaneMatthew, operations are continuing at PIH hospitals & clinics. Help us continue to treat patients:

— Partners In Health (@PIH) October 4, 2016

The U.S. Military announced it is moving nine helicopters and 100 personnel to Haiti starting Thursday to assist in the relief efforts.

Dr. Charles-Patrick Almazor, the chief medical officer in Haiti for Partners In Health who is on the ground in Port-au-Prince, told ABC News today that most of the devastation is in the southern part of Haiti, where it has been difficult to get in contact with relatives and friends, leaving many fearing for the worst.

Outside the PIH office in Port-au-Prince, the Rivière Grise rises due to rains from #HurricaneMatthew #MatthewHaiti

— Partners In Health (@PIH) October 4, 2016

He said there are some villages where they still haven’t been able to hear from a single person.

Almazor added he is worried about Cholera and Zika outbreaks in Haiti, two major healthcare concerns that devastated the nation even before Matthew hit.

Partners in Health tweeted that is seeking donations, in advance of a “likely surge in Cholera.”

PIH is assessing damage from #HurricaneMatthew, treating patients & preparing for a likely surge in cholera. Donate:

— Partners In Health (@PIH) October 5, 2016

“What would be the immediate need is to make sure that people get safe drinking water and safe water for washing,” Almazor added.

In a statement Wednesday evening, Almazor said, “though the storm has passed, experience tells us that the worst is yet to come.”

The storm has also disrupted Haiti’s political sphere. Haitian officials also announced that they would be postponing a presidential election that was scheduled for this Sunday as a result of Hurricane Matthew.

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