Antigua and Barbuda + 8 more

Update on Hurricane Irma in the Caribbean (September 14, 2017)

Situation Report
Originally published


Hurricane Irma, as category 5 hurricane, traversed the Atlantic bringing maximum sustained winds of 296 km/h and heavy rains to the Leeward Islands. The most heavily impacted islands are Anguilla,
Barbuda, British Virgin Islands, Cuba, Saint Martin, Sint Maarten, and Turks and Caicos. Islands that suffered extensive damage to infrastructure continue to have challenges restoring access to electricity and clean water. Repairing damaged health facilities in impacted islands is crucial in managing emergency patients, quick diagnosis and treatment of diseases, and reestablish treatment of noncommunicable diseases.

Situation update Irma


42% of total number of structures damaged

Princess Alexandra Hospital: Operational

  • The government aims to have critical sector services such as tourism, health and education functional within the next six months

  • The Princess Alexandra Hospital is now fully functional and providing regular health services

  • The hospital is powered by generators, and water is available through a cistern

  • Vaccines from Valley Health Center which is damaged and closed has been moved to Welches Polyclinic

  • The dental unit and Environmental Health Unit sustained major damage and are not operational

  • PAHO Country Program Specialist is providing psychosocial support to some staff of the health authorities and local red cross providing psychosocial support in communities

  • Anguilla is currently coping with the current international humanitarian assistance received

Antigua and Barbuda

99% of total number of structures damaged in Barbuda

[Barbuda] Hanna Thomas Hospital: Not operational

[Antigua] Princess Alexandra Hospital: Fully operational

  • The Health EOC remains operational at the Ministry of Health (MOH), and MOH is present at the National EOC

  • The daily medical and public health services are provided at the 2 government shelters for approximately 250 persons

  • Routine surveillance system is being strengthened to ensure inclusion of data from selected post-disaster health and other care facilities

  • One shelter was visited at a hotel with 40 persons where arrangements were made for health monitoring

  • A Briefing Meeting was convened by the CMO on 14 September with senior health officials and PAHO Disaster Reduction and Response Consultant and Epidemiologists to provide findings and recommendations

  • Recommendations include priority programs for the Health Sector including those in environmental health monitoring and outbreak prevention and control

  • A daily syndromic surveillance reporting system is to be implemented at the hospital, five main health centers and the government shelters with daily reports to be prepared by the Ministry of Health Surveillance Unit


Ragged Island is being evacuated

  • The government commenced return of evacuees to their respective islands today with the exception of Ragged Island

  • The Ministry of Health offered to send medical staff including nurses and physicians with a two week rotation schedule

British Virgin Islands

60% of total number of structures damaged

Peebles Hospital: Partially Operational

  • Support for medical service delivery is provided by: Hima (Puerto Rico), medical group from Atlanta, and British Government

  • Medical supplies from HIMA (Puerto Rico) are being stockpiled and will be sent to BVI in small quantities to prevent backlog on the pipeline

  • The airport is planned to re-open on 18 September for commercial flights

  • Municipal water supply is planned to be restored in one month

  • The Ministry of Health will review the WHO Emergency Health Kit and advise regarding needs; the stock may be stored in Barbados due to limites storage space and distributed as needed

  • Mobile Storage Units are being sent to BVI to increase storage capacity


73% of hospitals and policlinics in 27 municipalities have been damaged

Hospital Hermanos Ameijeiras: Not operational

Hospital Ginecoobstetrico America Arias: Partially operational

Hospital Universitario Faustino Perez: Partially operational

  • The gradual return of the population to their homes is guided by the Provincial and Municipal Defence Councils, depending on the severity of the damage

  • A significant number of people remain evacuated

  • Priorities include restoring healthcare access for those impacted Saint Martin and Saint Barthelemy

  • Saint Martin requested vector control and WASH Supplies, and logistics will be coordinated from Panama