Plan Canada delivers $13 million worth of life-saving medicine to Haiti:
Supplies are critically needed to prevent 'Second Wave of Death'

TORONTO, March 1 /CNW/ - A shipment of desperately needed medical supplies arrived in Haiti today from Plan Canada, helping to alleviate critical shortages of medications needed to treat victims of last month's earthquake.

The major part of the shipment is composed of antibiotics, anti-malaria and anti-fungal medication, painkillers, antiseptics and de-worming agents.

The delivery also includes $3.5 million worth of oral rehydration salts to treat children suffering from diarrhoeal diseases caused by the lack of safe drinking water. Dehydration caused by diarrhoea is the leading cause of death among children in developing countries and a serious concern in Haiti right now.

Without these medicines, disaster relief experts warn that tens of thousands of the injured who survived the earthquake could die in a second wave of death, a common occurrence in post-disaster situations.

"We must ensure Haiti has the medical supplies needed to make sure children and their families do not die from treatable infections, dehydration and disease," says Plan Canada CEO, Rosemary McCarney. "Unlike the earthquake, this looming tragedy is preventable."

The medical supplies, donated by the pharmaceutical industry, will be distributed by the World Health Organization's regional operations (PAHO) in coordination with Haiti's Ministry of Health.

Plan's 150 local staff members in Haiti are supported by more than 20 disaster experts brought in from various Plan operations to ensure we meet the immediate needs of children and to design and implement responses, including building temporary schools and child-friendly spaces.

Plan, in Haiti since 1973, operates in 10 areas, seven impacted by the earthquake, including Port-au-Prince and Jacmel.

SOURCE Plan Canada

For further information: For further information: Steven Theobald, Media and Public Relations Manager, Plan Canada, Mobile/BB: (416) 568-6525,

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