From this school we traveled to what would be the most impactful time of my trip. We made our way to the hospital where thousands of Cholera patients have been treated.
As we entered the first room, I was taken back by the beds in the Cholera ward. They were flat, narrow beds with a hole in the middle and a metal bucket underneath. I would learn that Cholera was so violent to the stomach that there is no time to get up to go to the bathroom. In the first room there was an elderly man and a middle aged woman who were being treated with IV fluids, the common treatment for Cholera.
We asked the doctor about the treatment for Cholera and he said it was quite simple...rehydration in most cases with IV's and low doses of antibiotics in severe cases. With such a simple treatment we all wondered why so many people die of Cholera, so we asked the doctor. His answer was troubling.
He told the story of many people that live in the rural areas of Haiti, some living 2 to 4 hours away from the nearest hospital. There are many stories of people going to work in the morning feeling fine, and by lunch time experiencing severe diarrhea. With the extreme loss of bodily fluids produced from Cholera, people literally die on the way to the hospital! We're talking about a few hours from the time a person feels bad to the time they die. I was shocked!
Why do I share these troubling details? Because water borne sickness is the number one killer in the world and it is SO UNNECESSARY.
I'm thankful and honored to work with Water With Blessings and their Water Women program. I look forward to hearing the stories how these real-life Water Women superheroes will change the country of Haiti!