Haiti: Insecurity, Fuel Shortage Threaten Delivery of Health Care and Humanitarian Aid
Three months after the earthquake that hit the southwestern region of Haiti, recovery has been impeded by rising insecurity and a severe fuel shortage, compounding an already alarming humanitarian situation. Disruption of fuel supplies has hindered the delivery of humanitarian assistance, including health care services provided by Project HOPE’s medical team in Les Cayes.
Washington, D.C. (November 15, 2021) – Three months after the earthquake that hit the southwestern region of Haiti, recovery has been impeded by rising insecurity and a severe fuel shortage, compounding an already alarming humanitarian situation. Disruption of fuel supplies has hindered the delivery of humanitarian assistance, including health care services provided by Project HOPE’s medical team in Les Cayes.
“Haiti faces many challenges which have been exacerbated by a deteriorating security situation,” said Adib Fletcher, Director of Humanitarian Programs at Project HOPE. “The security situation has become unpredictable, affecting our day-to-day operations and our ability to provide vital multi-sector support to health facilities and surrounding communities we support.”
As a result of fuel shortage, Project HOPE in Les Cayes was forced to reduce the number of medical visits undertaken by its mobile health clinics in October. As of last week, Project HOPE has resumed all of its operations after securing 400 gallons of fuel. The fuel will ensure continuous operations for 14 days before running out.
“The fuel shortage has had a negative impact on our operations, as well as that of other aid organizations. As a result, we face daily logistical challenges and have had to start rationing fuel to ensure our doctors and nurses can reach the clinics and communities we serve to provide health care and help save lives,” Fletcher said.
The fuel shortage is also threatening the functioning of health facilities across the country, causing life-threatening risks to patients in need of critical care.
Following the earthquake that damaged or destroyed approximately 90 health centers, access to adequate health care remains a challenge in the affected areas where health services are still interrupted.
Before being severely affected by the fuel shortage, Project HOPE had reached earthquake-stricken communities in remote areas like the Sucrerie Henry clinic, which had been destroyed and was still lacking necessary resources and aid needed for recovery. Upon arrival, the clinic’s administrator said, “People have been suffering here for two months since the earthquake, and no one has come to their rescue.” Project HOPE treated 172 patients and supplied medicines and hygiene kits on that first day. Many other patients could not be treated due to a lack of electricity.
In partnership with Health Equity International, Project HOPE, with funds from the US Agency for International Development (USAID), is supporting the restoration of basic primary health services to earthquake-affected communities and health facilities across the Sud, Grand’ Anse and Nippes departments.
Haiti being highly susceptible to epidemics, Project HOPE is also supporting access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene services by undertaking minor repair of water systems, providing water, sanitation, and hygiene supplies.
About Project HOPE
With the mission to place power in the hands of local health workers to save lives around the world, Project HOPE is a global health and humanitarian organization operating in more than 25 countries. Founded in 1958, we work side-by-side with local health systems to improve health and support community resilience. We work at the epicenter of today’s greatest health challenges, including infectious and chronic diseases; disasters and health crises; maternal, neonatal and child health; pandemic preparedness and response; mental health for health workers; and the policies that impact how health care is delivered. For more information, visit www.ProjectHOPE.org and follow us on Twitter @ProjectHOPEorg.
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