Haiti earthquake compounds health needs

January 2010

An injured man in stretchered to a medical facility after the quake.

The 12 January earthquake that caused widespread damage in the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince is exacerbating an already precarious health situation. WHO is leading the coordination of the health sector response to the emergency to support Haitian government.

In the immediate hours and days following the quake, search and rescue operations are the main life-saving priority. At the same time, treating people suffering from trauma injuries and preventing infection of wounds are critical to prevent suffering and unnecessary loss of life.

WHO has mobilized a team of specialists in mass casualty management, coordination of emergency health response and the management of donation of medicines and medical supplies to assist in the Haiti response. In addition, WHO is sending emergency trauma medical supplies to treat hundreds of people suffering from severe trauma injuries.

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