My Two Cents

Devastation strikes twice in Haiti

By Brett Mejia ’13
THE ROUNDUP

Haiti has been slowly recovering from the earthquake in early January that left more than 300,000 people dead.

Now only nine months from this event, cholera finds its way to Haiti.

Cholera has killed nearly 300 people and has infected approximately 4,000 people within the past few weeks of its discovery, according to MSNBC.

“The cholera bacteria that originated in Haiti is similar to what has been found in Southwestern Asia,” according to SIFY News.

The reason the cholera is similar to the bacteria found in Southwestern Asia is because the United Nations sent peacekeepers from Nepal to Haiti.

There was already a cholera epidemic in Asia and it has now caused a big protest toward the U.N. for their usage of peacekeepers in Haiti, according to the Associated Press.

Cholera bacterium causes an infection in the small intestine and causes problems that lead to severe dehydration and death, according to WebMD.

Someone can get cholera from many surfaces such as food, contaminated water and sanitation problems.

The problem with cholera in Haiti started with thousands of earthquake refugees having to move to cities that usually have a few hundred people living there.

This then caused overpopulation in all parts of the city and by the rivers.

The source of the cholera comes from the St. Marc River that is located in the Artibonite Valley.

The Artibonite Valley is located north of Port-au-Prince and is now home to thousands of earthquake refugees.

The St. Marc River is where most of the people get their drinking water from, but the problem was that the river also has raw sewage that flows in it, contaminating the water.

Recently Haiti has set up 12 cholera treatment centers and the Pan America Health Organization is also providing experts and supplies to be sent out to Haiti to ensure that the cholera gets properly dealt with and to make sure that the treatment centers have clean water to use with their patients.

For now, the Haitian government and the U.N. are working together to make sure that the spread of cholera comes to an end so Haiti can begin to rebuild themselves once again.