PAHO is working with national authorities
in Venezuela to respond to health sector needs following the floods that
have affected more than 150,000 people, and to mobilize emergency aid,
strengthen health sector coordination and humanitarian supply management.
Below is a summary of these activities.
To date, the following financial contributions have been channeled through PAHO:
- Pledge of US$160,000 received from Department for International Development of the U.K.
- Pledge of CAN$ 50,000 from Canadian International Development Agency US$25,000 from a special fund of the Director of PAHO to facilitate initial health responses
Dr. Alejandro Santander, of PAHO's Emergency Preparedness Program for South America, is in Venezuela to assist in coordinating health relief efforts in the Venezuela office.
SUMA -- Humanitarian Supply Management
The SUMA system, the Humanitarian Supply Management System developed by PAHO, has been set up to classify, sort, inventory and prioritize incoming supplies. Three international SUMA experts are en route to Venezuela to strengthen SUMA operations which are under the responsibility of the Civil Defense. Additional SUMA experts are on standby and will be called upon as needed.
An extensive and updated list of urgently needed medical supplies was received December 20th and circulated.
PAHO's Mental Health Program, in coordination with UNICEF, is in the process of trying to organize representatives to evaluate needs of the affected from a mental health perspective.
PAHO has just recently published two technical documents (Mental Health for Disaster Victims: Instructor's Manual and Mental Health for Disaster Victims: Field Worker's Manual - both in Spanish). These publications will be widely distributed to support national health interventions and subsequently evaluated based on these experiences.