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Health Systems Reconstruction: Haiti Reconstruction

Strengthening Haiti's Heath Systems

Following Haiti’s devastating earthquake in Jan 2010, CDC was invited to help reestablish and strengthen the country’s public health system. The CDC Health Systems Reconstruction Office (HSRO) partners with the Haiti Ministry of Health and Population (MSPP), the U.S. Health and Human Services, USAID, the U.S. military, other international organizations to assess and respond to the immediate and long-term public health needs in Haiti. CDC is engaged in public health areas spanning the arenas of rabies, malnutrition, and dengue to immunizations and HIV/TB. Some of our investments currently include:

Responding to cholera – In addition to our long-term efforts in overall reconstruction and rebuilding, CDC is highly engaged in the cholera outbreak in Haiti. We are currently focusing on the following goals:

  • Providing access to life-saving treatment and therapies
  • Improving access to prevention measures such as water, sanitation, and hygiene supplies
  • Accurately identifying cases, in both surveillance and laboratory
  • Providing proper clinical training and management

Establishing national and camp-based surveillance for diseases most likely to become epidemics - The newly established National Sentinel Surveillance System (NSSS) and Internally Displaced Persons Surveillance System (IDPSS) provide critical information on diseases such as malaria, TB, and cholera that enable public health officials to prioritize public health interventions and care.

Launching a Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETP) - In 2011, FETP will enroll 20-25 student-professionals in an intermediate field epidemiology training program (9-12 months) to learn how to lead outbreak investigations and to strengthen surveillance systems at the municipal and departmental levels.

Strengthening the national public health laboratory to provide quality diagnostic tests for select reportable diseases - A CDC developed sample collection, transfer, and tracking system has been established to join with the existing health system, improving the quality of TB, HIV/AIDS, malaria, and rapid rabies testing and lab services country-wide.

Tracking water safety and hygiene practices in camps - In partnership with the Global Water, Sanitation, & Hygiene (WASH) and the Department for Water Supply and Sanitation (DINEPA) CDC will develop a monitoring system that will report on clean water supply, latrine coverage, solid waste removal needs, number and availability of hand washing sites, and signs of associated disease outbreaks.

Controlling the spread of malaria - It is estimated that 200,000 cases of malaria occur annually. CDC and MSPP are working to identify and treat those with malaria and to assess the ability of different tests to detect cases of malaria as well as the effectiveness of treatment options. CDC and MSPP are also working closely to produce a vector control strategy and implement it effectively.

Assessing and supporting the national tuberculosis (TB) program - Haiti has had the highest rates of TB in the Western Hemisphere with an estimated incidence of 306 cases per 100,000. CDC and public health officials are now working quickly to reestablish and strengthen this program to prevent further spread of TB and ensure continuity of HIV services at TB facilities.

  • Page last reviewed: June 24, 2011
  • Page last updated: June 24, 2011
  • Content source: Global Health
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