Cholera Outbreak in Haiti
The St Damien Paediatric Hospital has treated cases of cholera since the bacteria first became present in Haiti in 2010 (accidentally spread by Nepalese UN peacekeepers after the earthquake). For the past 3 years prior to October 2022, Haiti had not seen a single case of cholera. Unfortunately cholera has spread widely across Haiti over the past few months, affecting children and adults, especially those living in conditions of extreme poverty.
Since the recent cholera outbreak began in October 2022, over 200 cases have been admitted to the St Damien Paediatric Hospital. Currently we have 4 doctors, and 9 nurses in our cholera ward with 17 beds.
According to the World Health Organisation, cholera is an acute infection caused by ingesting the bacteria Vibrio cholerae present in contaminated water or food. It is mainly linked to inadequate sanitation and insufficient access to safe drinking water. It is an extremely virulent disease that can cause severe acute diarrhoea, resulting in death, if not treated.
It costs a total of $1700 per day to treat a child with cholera at the St Damien Paediatric Hospital. On average a child stays in our ward for 3 to 4 days before being discharged. Fortunately most children have been treated and discharged in good health, due to early intervention. In a few cases, the children are admitted in a dire condition and there is little our medical staff can do to save them.
If you would like to help children in our cholera, please donate to St Damien Paediatric Hospital on our donation page.