CHOLERA - 8 DEATHS IN 78 CASES RECORDED IN MANICHE (SOUTH) AFTER TROPICAL STORM SANDY
PORT-AU-PRINCE - "From October 24 (date of the first effects of Hurricane Sandy) to today [Monday, 29 October 2012], the clinic has received 78 people with cholera. Eight have already died", said Madeleine Chery, the nurse in charge of the dispensary Community Dori, communal section of Maniche (about 200 miles south of the capital Port-au-Prince) to Alterpresse.
The flooding of the Cavaillon River (another municipality in the south of the country), with the rains caused by Hurricane Sandy, have encouraged the spread of Vibrio cholerae in the communal section of Dori.
"As of October 2012, the clinic has only one nurse for the entire population of Dori. We are left to ourselves with cholera, "says Ramón Gasma, coordinator of Tet Kole Ti Peyizan ayisyen (Union of small Haitian farmers of Maniche).
Faced with the increasing cases of cholera contamination, health authorities have sent to the South from "Saturday and Sunday [27 and 28 October 2012] 5 new nurses to accompany the head of the clinic."
This administrative arrangement does not seem to reassure the interim executive agents of Maniche, Pierre Alexis Evens, expressing "dismay" faced "with the plight of the Dori Communal Section, which is cut off from the rest of the commune because of flooding of the Cavaillon River and the fury of the Ravine Blanche which traverses through the commune.
With a population of about 15,000 inhabitants, Dori is located 8 km from the center of Maniche. The only clinic available to the communal section, does not even have a doctor.
"The clinic is not the most appropriate place to receive cholera victims, because it is close to a church and schools. Our first desire is that a cholera treatment center (CTC) installed for the peasants, and that a doctor is assigned to the clinic", hopes Alexis.
Meanwhile, several residents of the communal section have shown a "participatory heroism" by putting themselves into the flooding waters of the Cavaillon River to retrieve on the other side, drugs, iv fluids and other materials sent by the Ministry of Public Health and Population (MSPP).
The MSPP vehicle, carrying medicines and equipment, could not cross the flooded Cavaillon River to bring relief to Maniche, according to testimony gathered by AlterPresse.