UN launches new initiative to help fight cholera on HispaniolaListen /
The United Nations has launched a new initiative to support the Hispaniola campaign for the Elimination of Cholera on the island shared by Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
The announcement was made by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
“The new initiative will invest in prevention, treatment, and education.”
Secretary-General Ban says this new initiative will take a holistic approach to tackling the cholera challenge.
“ The main focus is on the extension of clean drinking water and sanitation systems. But we are also determined to save lives now through the use of an oral cholera vaccine. Because global vaccines are in short supply, we will first target high-risk areas: densely populated urban areas and rural areas far removed from health services. As population increases, the vaccine effort will expand its reach.”
Cholera continues to take a heavy toll on Haiti and the Dominican Republic. In Haiti, it has claimed the lives of more than 7,750 people and infected over 620,000.
Haiti will need almost $500 million over the next two years to carry out its national implementation plan.
Secretary-General Ban announced that $215 million in existing funds from bilateral and multilateral donors will be used to support the initiative.
In addition, the UN is committing $23.5 million, building on the $118 million the UN system has already spent on the cholera response to date.
Donn Bobb, United Nations