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Photo by Orlando Barría/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock (12295799k) Some of the injured during the earthquake are assisted in the surroundings of the general hospital due to the lack of available beds in Les Cayes, Haiti, August 16th, 2021

Hospitals in Haiti overwhelmed after earthquake disaster

August 19th, 2021
Injured people sit in the ambulance that transferred them from another town to the Immaculee Conception hospital in Les Cayes, Haiti, Tuesday, Aug. 17th, 2021, three days after an earthquake struck the southwestern part of the nation.
(AP Photo/Matias Delacroix)

Medical staff in Haiti’s hospitals say the institutions are completely overwhelmed by the survivors of Saturday’s 7.2 magnitude earthquake and urgently need help to treat them.

The quake left at least 2,189 dead and more than 12,268 injured, according to the country’s civil protection agency.

Meanwhile, search and rescue efforts are being hampered by a lack of resources and by heavy rains, which have caused mudslides that blocked roads in the region.

In an address yesterday, Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry urged the country to “unite to rebuild Haiti,” adding that the government is committed to providing aid to affected areas.

He also urged citizens to be conscious of the spread of COVID-19 during recovery efforts.

Haiti, home to about 11 million people, has recorded more than 20,000 coronavirus cases and more than 570 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

At least 75,000 homes were damaged or destroyed in tremors, affecting around 135,000 families.

The US Coast Guard is among a number of agencies on the ground assisting recovery efforts, while the US Department of Defense has announced it formed a joint task force to assist USAID with disaster relief.

The United Nations and the European Union have allocated $8 million and $3.5 million respectively in aid to Haiti.

The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) is also preparing to deploy members from an operational support team to the country.

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