Haiti - Health : 50% of the population could be affected by the chikungunya epidemic - HaitiLibre.com : Haiti news 7/7

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Haiti - Health : 50% of the population could be affected by the chikungunya epidemic
12/09/2014 09:27:38

Haiti - Health : 50% of the population could be affected by the chikungunya epidemic
The chikungunya epidemic, which began in late 2013 in the Americas, was detected for the first time in Haiti in May and its rapid spread has led the Haitian government to officially declare a medical emergency. To date, Haiti has recorded more than 65,000 cases of chikungunya and those responsible for public health, estimate that up to 50% of the population could be affected by the epidemic.

Unlike many other diseases transmitted by mosquitoes, no vaccine is available to prevent chikungunya. Common symptoms include fever and joint pain, which can be severe and disabling.

On Wednesday, the First Lady, Sophia Martelly, visited accompanied by Dr. Florence Guillaume, Minister of Public Health and Population (MSPP) and Dr. George Dubuche, the Director General of the Ministry, went to the Direct Relief warehouse in Port-au-Prince, where drugs to treat one million people will be distributed to 904 public health sitesto the population, and others Direct Relief partner hospitals.

The shipment contains more than 6.1 million Defined Daily Doses of pain relievers, oral rehydration packs, antibiotics, IV solution, malaria tablets, and mosquito spray. This distribution comes in the midst of a rainy season, expected to cause a wave of new cases.

These drugs are donation from several contributors including: Generic Pharmaceutical Association (GPHA) members Amneal, Hospira and TEVA Pharmaceuticals, alongside 3M, Johnson & Johnson, McNeil, McKesson, Prestige Brands and and generic pharmaceutical company Apotex who generously donated over $2.2 million in drugs on $2.6 million in medical aid included in the shippement.

"When a fast-spreading virus like chikungunya impacts people who already struggle to access health care, it is important to provide hospitals and clinics with the supplies they need to meet the growing demand for care,” said Jeff Watson, Apotex’s President, US and Canada (Apotex Corp/Aveva/Apotex Inc.) "Apotex is in a position to help, and we are delighted to work with Direct Relief to fill those gaps."

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