On 12 January 2010, a powerful 7.0 earthquake devastated Haiti-causing massive loss of life, catastrophic building damage, and unimaginable human suffering. The Government of Haiti estimates 220,000 people lost their lives and over 300,000 people were injured. The earthquake crippled Haiti's infrastructure, as key buildings, such as the Presidential Palace, the Parliament, the Ministry of Health (MSPP), and other government ministries collapsed. Eight hospitals were totally destroyed and 22 seriously damaged in the three regions most affected by the Earthquake (Ouest, Nippes, Sud-Est).

pdf Haiti: One Year After the Earthquake - January 2011

Previous PAHO/WHO Situation Reports

Haiti Health Cluster Bulletins



PAHO Responds to Cholera Outbreak on the Island of Hispaniola

Epidemiological reports continue to show a decline in new cholera cases in Haiti; however, clusters of increased numbers of cases have been reported in isolated areas. Haiti's Ministry of Public Health and Population reports that, as of February 21, there were 234,303 cases and 4,533 deaths due to cholera. With Carnival season underway, there are some increased risk of cholera transmission and the need to explain these clearly. The risk is not from human-to-human contact, but rather from ingestion of contaminated food or water.

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A Clean Water Partnership in Haiti

The Haitian Government, UN agencies and NGOs are delivering 4.2 million liters of clean drinking water every day - a major success considering Port-au-Prince's notorious traffic jams and ever shrinking boulevards from rubble spilling into the streets. PAHO/WHO assists the National Direction for Potable Water and Sanitation with chlorination for water trucks at filling stations to kill bacteria, which left untreated, can cause disease outbreaks in crowded settlement sites.




Six-month Report on the Humanitarian Response in Haiti

The UN Inter-Agency Standing Committee has published a six-month report on the response to the humanitarian crisis in Haiti following the 12 January 2010 earthquake. The IASC is the primary mechanism for inter-agency coordination of humanitarian assistance and involves the key UN and non-UN humanitarian partners. pdf Click here to read the full report .



Haiti Fact Sheets

The Pan American Health Organization has prepared Fact Sheets on the health situation in Haiti, in the aftermath of the 12 January 2010 earthquake. Among the themes covered: emergency and disaster response, the health cluster, health systems, environmental health, priority communicable diseases, mental health, nutrition, and others.




A week in the life of PAHO/WHO Haiti office

Nothing compares to the rhythm and energy of a work week at the PAHO/WHO representative office in post-earthquake Haiti. Even under ideal conditions, this office faced huge challenges in trying to meet the health needs of the Haitian population. Since the earthquake, the staff has expanded, incorporating health experts from around the world to help rebuild the health system. As each week begins, the PAHO/WHO team begin work with their counterparts at other agencies and within the Ministry of Health to help tackle the country's health problems.




Turn-Key Projects Can Help in the Reconstruction of Health Facilities in Haiti

As part of the reconstruction strategy in Haiti, large-scale infrastructure projects are expected to begin, based on the pledges made at the first International Donors Conference in New York on 31 March. Several turn-key projects are likely to be considered, under the assumption that they will save time and money. However, managing this type of project requires specific knowledge and input from the building's clients (in the case of health facilties, this might be the Ministry of Health) and the users (patients and staff, for example). The study prepared, principally for public sector healthcare facilities, provides guidance on maximizing the success rate for these projects.

pdf Download the study



Haitians Delivering Healthcare
to Haitians

Primary response to the earthquake of 12 January, including its health consequences, has come from the Haitian people themselves. Neighbors have been helping neighbors, rural families have taken in displaced victims from the city, and communities are developing new strategies to adapt to changed conditions. The following story describes different types of services that have been set up by and for the Haitian people.

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Three Families, One Camp

Families and individuals in temporary housing constructed since the earthquake face acute health threats. In the over 300 temporary settlements that have sprung up since the quake, PAHO/WHO and other international agencies are working with the Government of Haiti and local communities to organize vaccination programmes, monitor for disease outbreaks and deliver clean water, among other health interventions, to reduce the impact of these living environments.

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Haiti Earthquake: Health Q&As

What was the impact of the earthquake?

As of 15 February, the national Civil Protection Agency estimates that 217,366 people died from the 12 January earthquake. More than 500,000 people have left Port-au-Prince for outlying departments, including nearly 100,000 who have gone to Grand Anse and more than 160,000 to Artibonite. The Government estimates that 97,294 houses were destroyed and 188,383 were damaged.




Wind Hazard Maps Can Aid in Siting of Hospitals in Haiti

New state-of-the-art wind hazard maps for Caribbean islands and nearby coastal areas of Central and South America are critical aids when designing where to locate a new health facility or rebuild a damaged one. These maps can be useful in Haiti, where many hospitals will have to be built or retroffited after the earthquake of January 2010.




Inter-Agency Response

One Response: A collaborative inter-agency website that is supporting Clusters and OCHA fulfill their information management responsibilities in the Haiti emergency.

Water Sanitation Hygiene Cluster for Haiti

Logistics Cluster for Haiti



Health Facilities Database

The Haiti Health Facilities Working Group, in which PAHO/WHO participated as maintainer, created a Master List of over 900 health facilities in Haiti, including geographic locations and unique identification codes based on those generated by the Ministry of Public Health and Population (MSPP) of Haiti.

Click here to view and download.



Donating Medicines and Equipment

Massive humanitarian health needs exist in Haiti following the 12 January, 2010, earthquake, and clear WHO guidelines are in place for the donations of medicines and other medical supplies to support the relief effort. WHO recommends that potential donors follow these guidelines to ensure appropriate supplies are being provided to match needs on the ground.

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Meeting Haiti's Changing Health Needs

More than one month after the earthquake that devastated swathes of Haiti, more than 300,000 people are suffering from injuries and around one million are living in temporary settlements or host families after losing their homes.

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