Review and Evaluation of Haiti: after the earthquake - Book Report/Review Example

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[Instructor Name] Review and Evaluation of Haiti: After the Earthquake In January 2010, Haiti was hit by an earthquake with a catastrophic magnitude of 7.0 with an epicenter nearly 25 km west of the capital of Haiti, Port-au-Prince…
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Review and Evaluation of Haiti: after the earthquake
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Download file to see previous pages It has been estimated that the earthquake affected around 3 million people. According to the statistics released by the government of Haiti 316,000 people had died, 300,000 had been injured and around 1 million people had to be deprived of their homes. After the earthquake, the country had to face significant issues regarding non availability of communication facilities, transport facilities and hospitals. The electrical networks had also been damaged by the earthquake. There was ambiguity regarding the authority and responsibilities of personnel and this is what hampered the initial rescue and aid efforts. The overall infrastructure was severely damaged and there were no facilities for medical aid. The medical aid was given high priority in the rescue efforts. Paul Farmer presents a firsthand account of the scenario after the earthquake in Haiti in his book ‘Haiti after the Earthquake’. Farmer (2011) describes the earthquake in medical terms as acute-on-chronic. The literal meaning of this term is a small flare up of a continuous problem. In medical context, any situation that comes for a small period of time is referred to as acute while chronic is used for any situation that is continuous. The term acute-on-chronic is used to describe a scenario where a situation is continuous but its effects are witnessed periodically. However, the situation is constant and if the chronic nature of the situation is not detected, the problem may get worse. In the context of the Haiti earthquake, Farmer describes the social and economic situation of Haiti as the chronic situation and the earthquake as the factor that brought the weaknesses of the economic and social situation of Haiti to the foreground. From natural aspect, the earthquake was significant without any doubt, but the catastrophic effect of the earthquake was more due to the already prevailing social and economic situation in Haiti. According to the evaluation of the scenario done by Farmer, the health and education department run by the government of Haiti were significantly weak even before the earthquake happened. The unavailability of the resources to meet the healthcare needs of the people added to the adversity of the overall situation. The government of Haiti was unable to have a proper system of healthcare and education due to lack of funds and resources. Even though the foreign aid kept coming in, but it was not for the institutions run by the government and the aid was directed towards the NGOs that ran the clinics and schools in Haiti. Therefore, the state-run institutes were weak and the citizens could not take the benefit of the healthcare services provided by the independent organizations at large. These may be the root causes that added towards the adversity of the catastrophe. The weak policies by the Haitian government may also be classified as one of the factors that worsened the scenario. Due to the political instability in Haiti, the government was unable to determine any long term goals for the development of its healthcare system. According to Farmer, the international policies were in favor of Haiti and in 2003 President Clinton also showed his foundation’s intention to help out Haiti. The work to strengthen the public sector health system in Haiti had already started and teams from different countries, including one which Farmer himself was a part of, were working to establish medical facilities in remote locations. Thus the government moved towards development of healthcare but the plans were ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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