As Hurricane Season Continues, Health & Emergency Response Workers Prepare for Increasingly Severe Storms & Continued COVID-19 Threat
Washington, DC (9 September 2022) – As the 2022 hurricane season continues and we monitor Hurricane Earl and Hurricane Kay, Project HOPE – the global health and humanitarian aid organization – is assessing takeaways from past record hurricane seasons and related emergency responses to prepare for what is ahead, facing dynamic conditions compounded by dual crises: COVID-19 and climate change. The organization has a history of responding to natural disasters, including 2021’s Hurricane Ida and the Haiti earthquake, 2020’s Hurricanes Eta and Iota, and 2019’s Hurricane Dorian.
Last year’s Atlantic hurricane season was the third most active season in history, with 21 named storms triggering massive displacement and inflicting billions of dollars’ worth of damage. It is projected that storms will be even stronger and more frequent in the years to come, and Project HOPE is well positioned to respond.
“After a natural disaster, communities need sustained support toward recovery. Project HOPE focuses on supporting local health care systems and local frontline health workers in efforts to deliver resources they need to get impacted communities back on their feet,” said Harley Jones, Project HOPE’s Senior Manager of Domestic Operations. “Investments in health care and health workers are key, especially given the toll COVID-19 has taken on our health care workforce who are – once again – stretched beyond capacity.”
Many of the direct threats of these storms stand front and center: injuries, death, and destruction are the immediate impacts many of us think of. But there are also many longer-term impacts that can impact public health long after headlines fade, including long-term damage to infrastructure, loss of medicines and prescriptions, the spread of life-threatening illness, damage to mental health, and impacts on the social determinants of health.
Project HOPE works within health systems around the world to empower health workers with the training and tools they need to save lives. In response to natural disasters and crises, Project HOPE deploys expert staff and volunteers; mobilizes mobile medical units to affected and remote communities; and distributes medicines and relief supplies. In the longer term, the organization strengthens health care systems by repairing clinics, WASH systems, and supply chain improvements; improves the skills and knowledge of local health workers; and helps communities become more resilient by providing emergency preparedness training and guidance.
Interviews with health and humanitarian emergency response experts available upon request. For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact: Courtney Ridgway: [email protected]
About Project HOPE
Founded in 1958, Project HOPE is a leading global health and humanitarian organization operating in more than 25 countries around the world. We work side-by-side with local health systems to save lives and improve health. Our mission is at the epicenter of today’s greatest health challenges, including infectious and chronic diseases, disasters and health crises, maternal, neonatal and child health and the policies that impact how health care is delivered. For more information on Project HOPE and its work around the world, visit www.ProjectHOPE.org and follow us on Twitter @ProjectHOPEorg.