Haiti receives first shipments of cholera vaccines: WHO

The Caribbean island nation has suffered from more than 230 deaths since the disease re-emerged this past fall.

 DR. YUVAL LEVY, part of an Israeli military medical team that treated earthquake victims in Haiti, holds hands with a 6-year-old Haitian boy expected to undergo heart surgery in Israel, upon their arrival from Haiti at Ben-Gurion Airport on January 28, 2010. (photo credit: GIL COHEN MAGEN/REUTERS)
DR. YUVAL LEVY, part of an Israeli military medical team that treated earthquake victims in Haiti, holds hands with a 6-year-old Haitian boy expected to undergo heart surgery in Israel, upon their arrival from Haiti at Ben-Gurion Airport on January 28, 2010.
(photo credit: GIL COHEN MAGEN/REUTERS)

Haiti has received more than 1 million doses of oral cholera vaccines as it battles a worsening cholera outbreak that has been particularly deadly for children, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday.

Cholera reemerged in the Caribbean island nation in early October after around three years without reported cases, and so far 280 people have died. A significant number of them have been children.

The health crisis has come amid shortages of food and clean drinking water triggered by a gang blockade of its main fuel port.

The WHO said the vaccination campaign was set to start in the next few days and would initially target children from one-year old in the worst-hit areas of the Ouest and Centre Departments.

A logo is pictured outside a building of the World Health Organization (WHO) during an executive board meeting on update on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Geneva, Switzerland, April 6, 2021. (credit: REUTERS/DENIS BALIBOUSE/FILE PHOTO)A logo is pictured outside a building of the World Health Organization (WHO) during an executive board meeting on update on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Geneva, Switzerland, April 6, 2021. (credit: REUTERS/DENIS BALIBOUSE/FILE PHOTO)

"We hope this first shipment will be followed by others so that the vaccine is available to all populations at risk in Haiti," said Lauré Adrien, Director General of Haiti's Ministry of Public Health and Population in the same statement.

The 1.17 million doses of the vaccine Evichol were provided by the International Coordinating Group on vaccine provision which manages an emergency stockpile. Another 500,000 doses are expected in the next few weeks.