October 14, 2021—Two months since a magnitude 7.2 earthquake struck southern Haiti, medical needs remain high in the affected areas. While many people injured in the earthquake continue their treatment and rehabilitation, other medical needs have increased in the earthquake-affected areas due to the destruction of homes, health facilities, and other infrastructure.
HAITI EARTHQUAKE: MSF RESPONDS TO URGENT MEDICAL NEEDS
In response, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has been supporting hospitals and clinics with staff, supplies, reconstruction, and water and sanitation services. At hospitals in Les Cayes, Jérémie, and Port-au-Prince, MSF hasprovided surgical and post-operative care to 230 people with severe injuries from the earthquake.
“Many of our hospitalized patients have now been discharged and are receiving follow-up care as they continue their rehabilitation,” explains Raphaël Torlach, MSF emergency coordinator in Les Cayes. “We are helping patients with transportation and lodging so they can attend their appointments, because some live far away.”
Evolving medical needs
At the Immaculate Conception Hospital in Les Cayes, the number of patients arriving in the emergency room and the number of surgeries remain very high. An MSF medical team works together with the hospital’s staff to treat patients in the emergency, surgery, and post-operative wards, while also supplying medication and equipment.
“Nearly 50 patients are still hospitalized in the hospital wards we support,” Torlach says. “They include earthquake survivors with severe injuries but also patients with other traumatic injuries.”https://www.youtube.com/embed/OJeyHvDbR40?autoplay=0&mute=0&enablejsapi=1&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.doctorswithoutborders.org
In Port-a-Piment, the earthquake severely damaged a public hospital where MSF has provided sexual and reproductive health care for years. Medical services were initially moved outside to tented areas, and MSF renovated its logistical base in Port-a-Piment to provide a space for MSF and hospital staff to treat patients safely.
The OFATMA Hospital in Les Cayes was also badly damaged in the earthquake. Working along with hospital staff, an MSF medical team is preparing to manage pediatric and neonatal care in hospital tents. MSF is also building and equipping a delivery room and providing tents for pre-and postpartum care.
Reaching people in remote areas
To reach people in isolated areas of Haiti’s Sud department, MSF organized mobile clinics along the southern coast and in the mountains, as well as in displacement camps in Les Cayes. The mobile clinic teams—with a doctor, nurses, health promoters, and often a psychologist—have carried out more than 7,300 patient consultations so far, providing primary health care and mental health services.
With time, the number of patients with earthquake-related injuries has decreased, but many people have ailments related to poor sanitation and living conditions, such as skin lesions, acute respiratory infections, parasites, gastritis, and genital and urinary tract infections. Patients with severe conditions are referred to functional health facilities for care. These include malnutrition, infected wounds and abscesses, pregnancy complications, unmanaged chronic conditions, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
This week, MSF will finish distributing 5,000 kits of relief items to villages and displacement camps in the Sud department.
“We . . . put a big focus on ensuring water supply for the community for the longer-term, with the repair of water infrastructure.”
Sadie St. Denis, MSF emergency coordinator
In Haiti’s Nippes department, MSF teams have supported health facilities with donations of medical supplies, tents, and financial support. Over the last four weeks, MSF’s mobile clinic teams have treated 1,416 people, mostly for abdominal pain, gastritis, infections, and fever.
In the community of Baradères, the earthquake damaged or destroyed thousands of homes, forcing people to sleep outside or under makeshift shelters. It also damaged water systems, forcing people to find alternative sources.
“While we responded to the immediate needs with water trucking, installation of water bladders and an emergency surface water treatment plant, we also put a big focus on ensuring water supply for the community for the longer-term, with the repair of water infrastructure,” said Sadie St. Denis, MSF emergency coordinator in Nippes.
MSF teams have distributed non-food items such as jerrycans, water purification tablets, soap, hammers, plastic sheeting, blankets, and mosquito nets to help families build shelters and reduce the health risks associated with unsanitary conditions.
UNITED KINGDOM — Today, the three-day G7 summit came to an end with announcements about tackling the climate crisis. The climate and environment section of today’s Communique announced joint actions to end public support for overseas unabated coal generation by 2022 and agreed to “phase out new direct government support for carbon intensive international fossil fuel energy, except in limited circumstances at the discretion of each country.” These announcements are critical given that G7 countries provided an average of USD 86 billion in public finance for fossil fuels between 2017 and 2019 — more than three times their support for clean energy over the same time period, with the US among the worst actors. But the communique also includes a vague statement about the role of communities most affected yet least consulted about the climate crisis, stating “Together we welcome the active role and participation of vulnerable communities, underrepresented groups and will work towards achieving equality.”
In the lead up to the G7 summit, the Sierra Club and Friends of the Earth US hosted an inaugural Global Grassroots Leaders Climate Summit, bringing together grassroots leaders representing 30 organizations from 17 countries. During the summit, leaders emphasized the demand for a just transition to a clean energy economy which centers the most vulnerable communities. They also discussed the impacts of US-financed energy projects overseas and the climate issues in their communities more broadly, and shared their demands with the Biden Administration, including Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry, the Development Finance Corporation, the US Treasury Department, and the US Export-Import Bank. Grassroots Leaders also participated in public facing webinars elevating asks to immediately halt US overseas fossil fuel finance, shut down coal, and encourage renewable energy finance and just transition.
In response, Sierra Club International Climate and Policy Director Cherelle Blazer released the following statement:
“It’s a welcome sign that the United States is partnering with fellow G7 countries to acknowledge the need for a global transition off of coal and begin the phaseout of fossil fuels. However, the lack of commitment to an immediate end of financing for fossil fuel projects accompanied with FAR too little investment in new renewable energy is a game of too little too late. If the world is to meet the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement, we must make the bold steps necessary to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees. We cannot claim to grasp the ongoing — and increasingly dire — effects of the climate crisis while simultaneously prolonging the life of the fuels driving it. This past week brought welcome news, but it will only continue to serve as green rhetoric unless investment to address the climate crisis grows significantly.”
International Policy Campaigner Luisa Galvao from Friends of the Earth US released the following statement:
“G7 commitments to phase out fossil fuels are looking like swiss cheese: full of holes. While it is welcome that G7 countries finally agreed to end public support for coal, as communities around the world have long called for, the G7 should have taken this opportunity to end support for all fossil fuels, as science and justice require. Instead, the G7’s silence on oil and gas will continue to subject communities to an unjust transition.”
From Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Dana Lewis is a TV News Correspondent based out of London. Dana is the host of the podcast BACK STORY. He was formerly with Fox News, NBC News, CBS News, CBC News, and CTV National News. He was also a contributor to Al Jazeera America reporting on the Paris attacks, the Ukraine election, the 70th anniversary of D-Day, and current developments in Iraq. He is currently the Senior News Correspondent, freelance, for INSIGHT on TRT WORLD. Based in London, he is entirely independent. He has completed half-hour shows in-depth reports as a host and reporter on such complex issues as BREXIT, Nuclear issues, and American Foreign Policy.
Lewis has covered the World, including the current war in the Middle East, the hotel suicide bombings in Amman, Jordan, and updates following the London terrorist attacks. In 2003 Lewis was an embedded reporter with the 101st Airborne in Iraq; he was also embedded with U.S. forces along the Pakistan border. In Helmand, Province, Lewis is considered an expert on Russia, having lived there for 12 years, although he no longer lives there. He has covered China, the Middle East, and Central and Eastern Europe. He speaks English and Russian.
History Lewis was born in Toronto, Ontario. He attended York University and the Fanshawe College Broadcast Journalism program. He is a graduate of The Fanshawe College Journalism program.
Before joining Al Jazeera and Fox News, Lewis worked for several different news programs and networks, including NBC Nightly News, CTV News, and CBC News, and was a crime reporter for CFTR/CHFI Radio in Toronto.
Dana anchored the CTV National News and was Prime Time anchor of the 24 hour News Channel. He was also the main six o clock anchor for CBC News Edmonton. Later he became a National News Report in Canada for CTV, first based in Edmonton, then Toronto, and overseas.
During the 1990s, Lewis was the Jerusalem-based Middle East Bureau Chief/Correspondent for CTV. He was based in Jerusalem for six full years. Later while working for NBC, he came under fire while in a car in Ramallah during the Israeli siege of Yasser Arafat’s compound and narrowly escaped injury. He also covered the invasion of Somalia by U.S. forces and the first Gulf War.
He was embedded with the 101st Airborne Division during the Iraq invasion in 2003, reporting for NBC News and DateLine NBC and MSNBC.
Lewis was one of the first reporters to enter Afghanistan after September 11 and has been embedded with the 82nd Airborne and 10th Mountain Division in Afghanistan, the 101st Airborne, and U.S. Marines there.
Dana Lewis has an Emmy nomination for a story on Russian orphans and the prestigious Overseas Press Club award for War in Kosovo. He also holds various RTNDA awards. And he was honored for his coverage of the Kursk Submarine disaster in Russia.
He is featured in Robin Moore’s (French Connection) new book Hunting Down Saddam”.
He also was a guest lecturer at the Prestigious U.S. Naval War College on media affairs. Lewis was one of the first reporters to interview General David Petraeus (Later Director of the CIA) and followed him through the Iraq War’s early days.
Lewis has interviewed President Putin and is one of the longest-serving western reporters to be based in Russia. (12 years)
He also interviewed, among others King Hussein of Jordan, Israeli leader Netanyahu, and Shimon Peres.
Dana Lewis has a wife (Victoria) and two sons (Aleksander and Daniel).
Awards Lewis has earned recognition for several different stories he has covered in his career, including Overseas Press Club awards for his coverage of the war in Kosovo and the Kursk submarine disaster in Russia. He was nominated for an Emmy Award for Russian Orphans content and has also received various RTNDA awards for spot news coverage. The Dana Lewis Front Line Award is annually presented to graduating journalism students.
Lewis also personally sponsors an award for Broadcast Journalism students from Fanshawe College. It is called the “Front Line’ award and is presented annually to the student who delivers the best breaking news story.
Fifteen years ago, Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar took a day off from work, set out on a scenic drive, and was never seen again. Authorities later found his car and his laptop, with its hard drive removed and discarded elsewhere, but the mystery of Gricar’s disappearance remains unsolved. On the night of September 11, 2001, Michele Harris of Owego, NY, seemingly faded. Her van was found parked at the end of her family’s driveway. She was in the process of a bitter breakup from her wealthy spouse, Cal Harris, the owner of many local car dealerships. Michele’s body has never been found. Her husband was tried four times for her death. The jury convicted him in the first two trials, but both verdicts were thrown out. The third trial resulted in a hung jury. In the fourth trial, Cal Harris was vindicated.
Senator Peter Whish-Wilson has called on Tasmanian Minister for Resources Guy Barnett to not withhold critical information needed for bushfire research.
This data includes:
maps showing fire impacts
photo interpreted data
historical forest loss
forest change layer since logging commenced on public land in Tasmania
Senator Whish-Wilson said, “as Tasmania approaches bushfire season yet again, access to this information is critical.
“The research that desperately needs this information will help prepare us for threats facing our already-vulnerable state.
“Earlier this year, local Tasmanian scientists had to withdraw their research paper when they became aware of a categorisation error in their work – this was a demonstration of basic research integrity.
“If Tasmanian scientists have access to the data they need, they are better placed to go about the business of conducting research.
“I have also expressed my disappointment to Minister Barnett at the behaviour of his Senate colleagues on this issue.
“Their public comments point to a fundamental lack of understanding of the scientific process.
“Our science and research capacity here in Tasmania is world-renowned, so I’m not just appalled but also surprised to see our scientific community become a political target.
“To those attempting to smear the reputations of local researchers I say: how about you leave science to the scientists.
“This week we learnt from an alarming survey by the Ecological Society of Australia that scientists are under pressure to suppress their work and fear for their careers when publishing research.
“These are the people we should be backing and giving all the basic support they need.
“As this data is used to make critical decisions on how to manage public land in Tasmania, it should be publicly available.
“The data could be released tomorrow – all that is needed is Minister Barnett’s signature.”
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