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Prayer Needed: Haiti Cholera Deaths Growing

Christian aid organizations are requesting urgent prayer as more than 900 people have died from a cholera outbreak in the earthquake-ravaged country of Haiti. According to The New York Times, the disease has been found in the majority of the country’s provinces, and 14,000 people have been hospitalized with symptoms.  In one province, cholera is accounting for almost two-thirds of deaths. Unfortunately, epidemiologists fear the outbreak will continue to worsen, spreading to other areas of the nation, as the United Nations predicts hundreds of thousands ill over time. Cholera is a bacterial infection most likely to occur where sanitary conditions are poor and access to clean water is limited, and the rate of severe cases in Haiti is increased from a normal outbreak becuase of the extreme poverty and poor living conditions present. Aid workers continue to provide clean water, cleaning supplies, and hygiene education to prevent further illness, but even before the earthquake and the more recent stormy weather, access to potable water was limited throughout the country. An aid worker said, “When we go around and give advice about hygiene, they say, ‘Let me have soap. I can’t afford it.” The New York Times said the United Nations has requested more than $160 million in funds from humanitarian agencies and donors to help the government of Haiti respond to the outbreak.