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Hurricane Irma

Updated September 11, 2017. Situation Report No 4 is now published. This report focuses on the healthcare situation in the Caribbean following Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Jose and provides resources and information based on early indications for medical and health impacts by country and island. This report should be considered preliminary information based on social media and open sources. On September 11, 2017, Humanity Road conducted a special data mining effort to identify medical and health situation reports from official sources, social media and open sources. The report contains specific island updates where possible.

Humanity Road activated its disaster desk on Tuesday, September 5th in advance of initial landfall in the Caribbean. Situation Report No 1 was published on September 6, 2017, and Situation Report No 2 was published on September 7.

Hurricane Irma, one of the strongest storms ever recorded in the Atlantic, hit the eastern Caribbean on September 5, 2017 as a Category 5 hurricane with winds of up to 185 miles an hour. source1 source2 source3 source4

Visit Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency for ongoing situation reports. CDEMA presently comprises eighteen (18) Participating States (PS): Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Commonwealth of the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Republic of Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Suriname, Republic of Trinidad & Tobago, Turks & Caicos Islands and the Virgin Islands.

Significant Updates

Sep 10:

  • CDEMA says recognition of a single coordinated system, adequate funding for response personnel and supplies and the availability of assets to move personnel remain the biggest challenges to response. source

  • Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) has published situation reports for the Caribbean islands impacted source

    • The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) is coordinating deployments of human resources as part of a surge capacity to support the Ministry of Health and humanitarian response as the authorities identify needs.

    • This includes staff deployed by PAHO, Emergency Medical Team (EMT), and the Regional Rapid Response Team.

    • Focus areas in deployments include coordination, damage assessment, epidemiological surveillance, logistics, information management, and water and sanitation. Rapid Response Team experts including logisticians, electrical engineers, assessment and WASH experts are being deployed after the passage of Hurricane Jose.

    • Requested supplies are being provided by PAHO and country offices in Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago. As needed medical and other supplies are identified by countries and shared with PAHO, medical and other supplies are being prepositioned in Panama and Barbados for rapid distribution.

  • Direct Relief has prepositioned emergency medicine and supplies throughout the Gulf Coast, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Jamaica source

  • Cuba has sent more than 750 health workers who have arrived in Antigua, Barbuda, Saint Kitts, Nevis, Saint Lucia, the Bahamas, Dominica and Haiti. They have been told to follow the guidelines of the Ministry of Public Health (Minsap) and to contribute to aiding the recovery of regions that have been hit by the hurricane. source

Sep 6

  • UNOCHA - ​Caribbean:​ Hurricane​ ​Irma Situation Report No. 01 (as of 6 of Sep 2017) source

Medical Situation Reports and Maps

Medical Updates By Island

Anguilla

  • Sept 10

    • FLOW Anguilla reopening source

    • AXA Airport reopens for charter and emergency flights source

Useful Links:

Antigua and Barbuda

Sept 10

  • Cuba sends health workers source

  • Via UNOCHA sitrep #4 The World Food Programme (WFP) is expected to deploy a team to Antigua on 11 September. The agency also intends to send a plane with Mobile Storage Units (MSU) and 10 MT High Energy Biscuits source

  • Via UNOCHA sitrep #4 - Almost all critical facilities in Barbuda, including ambulances have been destroyed by Hurricane Irma. The entire population was evacuated to Antigua in anticipation of Hurricane Jose, which fortunately skirted past the island. Needs for Barbudans evacuated to Antigua include shelter, and access to education and healthcare. Support with telecommunications is needed to restore electricity in Barbuda. Medium-to-long term recovery needs identified so far include building materials for reconstruction, equipment to clean the island, supplies for schools and hospitals, health kits, dignity kits and seeds and other agricultural goods. source

Sept 08

  • A.B. Search and Rescue team helped evacuate and brought in medical resources main base at the airport firestation source

  • Seaborne Airlines will be making relief flights once safe to do so source

Useful Links:

Bahamas

Sep 10

  • Doctors Hospital Nassau is open as of 1500 Sept 9 with command center # 603-4801 source

Useful Links:

British Virgin Islands

British Virgin Islands

Sep 11

  • Update on British Virgin Islands via BVInews source

  • Official email for persons seeking information: bviddmirma@gmail.com.

  • A safety check sheet has been established See http://www.bvisafetycheck.com/

  • Contact number for Peebles Hospital 284-494-3497

Useful Links:

Cuba

Sep 10

  • Cuban Red Cross deploys more than 7000 volunteers throughout country source

  • In province Ciego de Avila, Cuban Red Cross teams evacuated more than 1,000 seniors living in care centers source

Useful Links:

Dominican Republic

Sep 10

  • Cuban Red Cross deploys more than 7000 volunteers throughout country source

  • In province Ciego de Avila, Cuban Red Cross teams evacuated more than 1,000 seniors living in care centers source

Useful Links:

Puerto Rico (USA)

Sep 10

See Medical Situation Reports above

Useful Links

Twitter

  • Hashtags: #IrmaPR #PuertoRico #AEEHuracanes #HuracánIrma

  • Account: @ricardorosello (Governor), @AEMEAD1 (Emergency Management Bureau)

Saba Island

Sep 10

  • See Medical Situation Reports above

Useful Links:

St. Barts (St. Barthelemey)

Sep 10

  • There are security concerns around health care facilities and medical stocks source

Useful Links:

St. Eustatius

Sep 10

  • See Medical Situation Reports above

Useful Links:

St. Kitts and Nevis

Sep 10

  • There are reported damages to health care facilities and health needs assessments are underway. Water and sanitation kits have been identified as key relief items that will be needed to address the effects of Irma on the islands source

St. Martin / Sint Maarten

Sep 10

  • The Government of the Netherlands reported four deaths. Significant damage to infrastructure is reported. Hospital does not have access to water and electricity. Security situation has improved with patrols preventing looting and robberies. Water and food distribution has taken place. source

Sep 7

  • Via PAHO - On the French side of the island indicate that the hospital has sustained substantial damage with services such as emergency room and surgery non-operational. There is an increase in consultations due to minor injuries. A small field hospital is in place with capacity for 25 patients and selected procedures. Replacement medical staff is being deployed from Guadeloupe and mainland France. The airport control tower on the French side has collapsed; however, French military planes are landing in this airport. source

Useful Links:

Turks and Caicos

Turks and Caicos

Sep 10

  • See Medical Situation Reports Above

Useful Links:

U.S. Virgin Islands

Sep 11

  • Department of Health nurses continue arriving from St. Croix to assist and relieve counterparts on St. Thomas and St. John. source

  • FEMA Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT) will establish a mobile medical facility outside hospital in St. Thomas. A facility intended for longer use will be established at the rear of the hospital. source

  • Health Commissioner Michelle Davis announced that mental health services are being provided to inmates transferred to St. Croix. Dialysis patients evacuated from St. Thomas are now in St. Croix awaiting transfer. source

  • Thirty inmates were transferred from the St. Thomas correctional facility to Golden Grove on St. Croix. Thirty more are awaiting transfer. source

Sept 7:

  • Pan-American Health Organization and the World Health Organization Ist Sitrep Link

  • Hospitals are damaged and patients are being evacuated to St. Croix source

St. Thomas

Sept 11:

  • Reports of People Still Cut Off in Fortuna as Supplies Arrive on St.Thomas. Major relief commodities and personnel have begun arriving steadily into St. Thomas, now that the airport and commercial marine port facilities have been cleared for use, according to the V.I. government’s Emergency Operations Command. source

  • Two cruise ships are to arrive today to evacuate 2,000 tourists to the U.S. mainland. Vacated hotel rooms, which are undamaged, may house military and other relief personnel. source

  • Schneider Regional Medical Center (SRMC) directed all clinical staff to report for work at 7:00 a.m. tomorrow. Non-clinical to report at 8:00 a.m. While not admitting patients, SRMC and Myrah Keating Smith Community Health Clinic, St. John, continue providing emergency services. source

Sept 10:

  • The U.S. Navy and the Marine Corps are helping to evacuate patients from Schneider Regional Medical Center to St. Croix, which was spared the brunt of the storm. source

St. John

10 Sept:

  • (Schneider Regional Medical Center) hospital on St. John faced catastrophic failure during the storm. Patients with life threatening injuries were evacuated to hospitals in Puerto Rico and St. Croix

  • As of Sep 9th @USNavy & @USMC teams in Virgin Islands have:

    • conducted 47 MEDEVACs

    • delivered 17,500lbs of food, water & medical supplies @USFleetForces

Water Island

Sep 10

  • St. Croix (Crucians) are delivering supplies to St. Thomas, St. John and Water Island source

    • Two 42-foot powerboats with 12,000 pounds of supplies donated by residents

St. Croix

Sep 11

  • See Medical Situation Reports above

  • The island of St. Croix did not receive the full brunt of the storm, and the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix is open to commercial flights. source

Useful Links:

  • Population: 107,268, source

  • Reunification: Please dial 1-800-RED-CROSS or 1-800-733-2767; choose “Option 3” to speak with an operator. source

  • Government of USVI: website, twitter, facebook

  • Virgin Islands Alert: source

  • Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency: facebook

  • USVI Update for Visitors. source

  • Commissioner of Tourism: facebook

  • USVI Department of Health: website, twitter, facebook

  • Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Caribbean: twitter

  • Inform USVI: website

  • Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA): facebook

Disaster Communications Planning

Learn more about how to prepare wireless devices during an emergency

Communications During an Emergency:

Use text messaging, e-mail or social media to let your loved ones know you are okay. Keep it short and simple by only conveying necessary information. By doing so, other people are also able to communicate with their loved ones.

Avoid making voice calls unless it’s an emergency to prevent clogging the network. Voice calls take up more space on the wireless network and it’s important to minimize unnecessary voice calls so our emergency responders are able to communicate.

If you must make a call, keep it short.

Also, when making a call, wait 10 seconds before redialing a call to help reduce network congestion. Quickly redialing phone numbers contributes to a clogged network.

Judiciously use social media to keep you informed as the situation unfolds. This may include using location-based mapping apps for evacuation routes.

Learn more about how to prepare wireless devices during an emergency

Disaster Communication Tips including Limit voice calls, Send IMOK text, Save battery, Use Social Media, Be Brief, Use Text message when voice lines fail