WHO, Aid Agencies Begin Providing Health Assistance To Cyclone-Hit Southern African Nations To Ward Off Disease

Agence France-Presse: Toll from cyclone-hit southern Africa surges as U.N. launches health aid
“The death toll from a cyclone that ravaged three southern African countries last week headed Thursday towards 400, as officials estimated that more than 1.7 million people had been affected by the storm and 15,000 people were still stranded in floodwater. As the toll surged from the region’s biggest storm in years, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced plans to tackle an emerging threat to survivors from malaria and cholera…” (3/21).

Reuters: U.S. military may join Mozambique cyclone rescue, aid agencies told
“U.S. military teams could join the cyclone rescue effort in Mozambique, a representative of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) said, according to the minutes of a humanitarian meeting published on Thursday. ‘The Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) will be mobilized. A military aircraft is in Maputo. The U.S. Embassy is requesting approval to mobilize military teams to support rescue operations,’ the minutes of Wednesday’s meeting showed, citing a USAID representative…” (Miles, 3/21).

Thomson Reuters Foundation: African cyclone survivors risk ‘second wave’ of loss with disease threat
“At least half a million survivors of a powerful cyclone in southeast Africa are at risk of fatal diseases, from cholera and dysentery to malaria, aid workers warned on Thursday, as rescue teams struggled to reach flood-hit communities. … At least 360 people have died, and 2.6 million people have been affected, the United Nations said, as Idai’s winds ripped apart homes, schools, and medical centers. Accompanying heavy rains have triggered floods, inundating swathes of farmland…” (Bhalla, 3/21).

Additional coverage of rescue and humanitarian efforts is available from The Guardian, New York Times, NPR, Reuters, The Telegraph, and U.N. News.

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