Live Updates - When Cholera Strikes: A Call to Help
29 March 2023 17:15
THURSDAY, 13 APRIL
An update on the cholera situation in Haiti. After surging numbers last weekend, cholera once again started to wane, with numbers falling into the teens. Still very difficult for our team and center, which was only built for up to 10 beds initially. But then came the roller coaster. Just when we were starting to catch our breath, another wave has hit, bringing even more patients to the center. Just a few days ago, numbers topped 20 inpatients, and with a tired and struggling staff, this made things incredibly challenging for our team. Just as we celebrated at Easter, there is still hope, and one thing can consistently be said - the staff at HCBH are steadfast and resilient. Even though they were overwhelmed, everyone stepped up to continue the incredible care for those affected with cholera.
We ask for your continued prayers for our team and center. Last week, thanks to your help, we built more beds to handle the increased numbers. We still need your help to provide funding for additional staff and for more medicines and supplies. Help support us now, by clicking the button below. We appreciate your support!
MONDAY, 3 APRIL
It's been a challenging last few days at our Cholera Treatment Center. At the end of last week, we were informed that the local government hospital had closed its doors. As a result, we continued to receive patients over the weekend, topping out at 37 by Saturday evening. Overwhelmed and understaffed due to the rapid amount of patients, our team worked throughout the evening, providing excellent care to those in need. Due to their tireless effort and care, we were able to discharge over a dozen patients during the last 36 hours. This morning, 23 patients were receiving treatment, but with more expected later today.
There is still so much more work to be done. We are busy constructing additional cholera beds, adding more staff (a doctor, more nurses and cleaners) and diligently searching for much needed supplies. We still need your help to provide funding for our efforts in the cholera center. Click the button below and help us provide life-saving care to the most vulnerable.
***UPDATE*** - 10:38am
We just received word that there are now 23 patients in the Cholera Treatment Center this morning and one of our nurses has just fallen ill, leaving the unit short-staffed. Please donate today to help us staff the center and continue caring for these critically ill patients.
WEDNESDAY, 29 MARCH
When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none,
and their tongue is parched with thirst,
I the LORD will answer them;
I the God of Israel will not forsake them.
Yesterday we received the incredibly sad news that a five-year-old girl had died in Haiti. What happened? Had she been in a road accident? Maybe caught up in protests or needless violence? In many ways, it was far worse. She had died from cholera – from lack of clean drinking water. Something over 91% of the world’s population has access to every single day. But not this day.
It’s hard to imagine the pain and grief the mother of this young child must have felt. Clean water. Something so simple, so basic. But yet, something that many Haitians have been struggling with as cholera reared its ugly head earlier this year. HHA and our partner hospital in Haiti (HCBH) quickly responded to this crisis by opening a Cholera Treatment Center. We were hopeful it would only need to stay open for a few weeks, maybe even a month, but for now there is no end in sight.
The hard reality is that it costs $67 every day to keep the doors open to the center. As an emergency response, we rely on donors just like you to support our efforts. We don’t know how long cholera will last in Haiti, but we do know our call to serve those in need never ends. In Isaiah 41, God responds to the cry ‘of the poor’ who were searching for water and says, ‘I will answer them…I will not forsake them.’ We too, cannot afford to forsake this urgent issue. Matthew 25 gives us another clear response:
“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,”
The death of this child is a tragic reminder of the importance of access to clean water and proper sanitation. Cholera is a preventable disease, but it requires a real effort from individuals, communities, and hospitals just like ours. We’re working hard to provide emergency support as well as educating people about the dangers of cholera, not only to adults but also to children, who are often the most vulnerable.
If you would like to help save lives and keep our cholera treatment center open, please donate now.
Please check back as we'll be updating the news on cholera over the coming weeks.