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Haiti’s cholera epidemic, which began in 2010, is the world’s largest in over a half-century. Since the epidemic broke out, cholera has killed more Haitians than it has in the rest of the world combined.
While the nonprofit Partners In Health completed a widespread two-part oral vaccination campaign at the end of May, the organization warned that the disease is expected to remain endemic in Haiti for many years to come.
Earlier this year, the presidents of Haiti and the Dominican Republic joined the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), UNICEF, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) called for major international investments in water and sanitation infrastructure to eliminate cholera from the island of Hispaniola.
Even before the earthquake, only 63 percent Haitian residents had access to improved drinking water, and access to sanitation services actually declined from 26 percent of the population in 1990 to 17 percent in 2008. These conditions facilitated the rapid spread of cholera following the original outbreak in October 2010.
To learn more about PIH's efforts to combat cholera in Haiti, please click here.