After Hurricane Matthew cut a deadly path through the Caribbean and as it batters the coast of the southern U.S., our second Emergency Team has arrived in Haiti with our partner Hope for Haiti on a relief flight from Connecticut with the first of many aid shipments. Our response team member in the Dominican Republic has arrived in the impact zone in Les Cayes and Jérémie to assess needs and coordinate aid shipments. Our first Emergency Team already on the ground in the country reports transportation and communications have been badly disrupted — with key bridges and roads washed out, and phone communication cut off from the hardest-hit areas in southwestern Haiti, making it extremely difficult to reach devastated communities.
With major evacuations in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas as Matthew slams coastal communtiees with damaging winds and storm surges, another Emergency Team is prepositioned in Florida to coordinate our U.S. response with our partners in the area. Americares has medicines and medical supplies, including insulin and tetanus vaccine, stocked in our warehouse for the injured.
“Our staff has just arrived in the hardest hit areas and we are only now beginning to understand the scale of the damage and the need. We will work closely with local organizations in Haiti and Florida to meet survivors’ most urgent health needs. We are particularly concerned about the potential for a spike in cholera cases in Haiti in the aftermath of the storm.”