South Asia’s summer monsoon season has been particularly harsh this year, and has caused severe flooding in areas of Bangladesh, India, Nepal, and Pakistan, displacing more than 20 million people. The pooling of contaminated flood water, combined with the region’s hot climate, has created an ideal breeding ground for diseases like diarrhea, malaria, and various skin ailments.
The flooding has also hit these countries’ agricultural resources, wiping out an entire season’s worth of crops in some cases, which could create a longer-term problem than the immediate health risks alone.
Below is the latest information on Direct Relief’s efforts to assist those affected by the flooding, listed by country:
- Bangladesh: Direct Relief is in touch with its partner Marie Stopes Clinic Society (an affiliate of global partner Marie Stopes International), who are assessing the needs of their 23 health centers throughout country. Once this information is compiled, Direct Relief will work the group to fulfill whatever medical needs it can.
- India: A shipment is currently being packed for the Public Health Department of Greater Mumbai, and is poised to leave Direct Relief’s warehouse later this week. This emergency airfreight shipment will include antibiotics, analgesics, anti-infectives, oral rehydration salts, water purification tablets, and an assortment of basic instruments and supplies.
- Pakistan: Direct Relief procured an Emergency Health Kit for partner American Refugee Committee, whose operations are based outside the city of Quetta. The kit contains a variety of medicines, IV solutions, and other supplies and equipment.
- Nepal: Partner Adventist Development and Relief Agency International (ADRA) is running mobile healthcare centers in the affected areas, and is creating a shipment list based on Direct Relief’s current inventory of medical supplies.
Direct Relief is also contacting partners outside the immediately affected areas to gauge any increased needs they may have due to the movement of displaced persons.