CaribWorldNews, UNITED NATIONS, NY, Weds. Dec. 1, 2010: The number of reported cases of cholera in Haiti has risen to just over 72,000.
That`s according to the UN World Health Organization. The agency says this number includes the 1,648 deaths. The report comes as Haitians continued to protest the November 28th election and there were reports of shootings in rural areas and a protest march by hundreds of people in the capital, Port-au-Prince.
However, WHO officials say there are now 40 cholera treatment centers in the country with a an average capacity of 100 to 200 beds each and the 61 cholera treatments units – small units established in hospitals and health centers – had an average capacity of 20 beds each.
Ten additional cholera treatment centers and 39 cholera treatments units are required, as well as 350 more doctors, 2,000 nurses, 2,200 support staff and 30,000 community health workers, WHO said.
This as some Haitians continue to claim that the cholera virus was imported and directly linked to Nepalese peace workers of the U.N.
Meanwhile, a survey carried out among 37 aid groups providing health care by Haiti`s Ministry of Public Health and Population has identified key challenges to the cholera response, Elisabeth Byrs, spokesperson for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), said.
These include the removal of the bodies of the dead, the disposal of medical waste, the identification of sites on which to set up health centers, and a lack of trained personnel.
On funding, Byrs said some $32.9 million of the $164 million humanitarian agencies are seeking for the cholera emergency has been received as of Tuesday.