Hurricane Ida Reaches Gulf Coast
Washington, D.C. (August 29, 2021) – Strengthening overnight with life-threatening force, Hurricane Ida is reaching the Louisiana coast as a Category 4 storm. Arriving on the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Ida is one of the largest storms of the past century to strike the U.S. Gulf Coast. While evacuations were urged for parishes in Ida’s path, local officials are now urging residents to shelter in place, avoiding movement in hazardous conditions. There is high potential for catastrophic impact, including flooding, storm surge, power outages, and structural damage to homes, buildings and health care facilities.
In addition to Hurricane Ida’s direct threats, emergency response conditions are further complicated by the current COVID-19 public health crisis affecting the U.S. Southeast region. Louisiana’s strained health system and health workers are coping with caring for a surge of coronavirus patients. Power outages, health care facility damage, access to PPE and medicines and supply chain mobility are health care issues of concern as Hurricane Ida bears down. The safety and capacity of local frontline health workers are paramount.
Project HOPE is mobilizing a team to the Gulf Coast region to assess conditions and assist local health systems. We are engaging our volunteer health care worker network to prepare for potential on-site support needs as local health system leaders navigate conditions and address community health needs ahead. We are engaging partners throughout the region, including Healthcare Ready and the National Association of Free & Charitable Clinics, in anticipation of a large-scale collaborative emergency response effort to serve health and security needs of people most impacted by Hurricane Ida.
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.