Animal-borne Disease A Risk in Flooded Communities
By Albert Santoli - Project leader
The Philippines is among the most natural disaster plagued countries in the world, according to United Nations agencies. During 203 and 2014 the two most destructive typhoons on the planet -- Typhoon Haiyan and Typhoon Hagupit have devastated the Philippines. Causing millions of displaced persons and altering the environment, including longstanding stagnant water which breeds myriad tropical diseases to humans and animals. Asia America Initiative saw the value of domestic animals, especially dogs being a comfort in the emotion recovery process for children. But human medical treatment, food and clean water needs are extensive and very expensive. We are continuously in consultation with community leaders and medical experts we are assisting in flood relief asctivities, They have expressed a consistent professional opinion regarding domestic animals that there is a recent history of domestic animals spreading disease. This is done through communicable and potentially life threatening diseases such as rabies, leptospirosis and plague. Medical assistance for thiese diseases can be costly for a family that has lost their livelihood due to storm destruction of shops, crops and fisheries. It costs more than $100 for medical treatment of rabies and potentially lethal fevers caused by leptospirosis -- similar to bublonic plague. Many families earn leass than $100 per month for basic survival. More dangerous is in flood damaged communities there is little to no medical treatment available. Due to enormous humanitarian needs caused by the December 2014 Typhoon which caused havoc over large areas of the Philippine central and northern islands, AAI has decided to consolidate all funds available to human needs. Previous donations for our pet rescue program were spent in agricultural communities in Iloilo and Capiz provinces of Visays, which are still revbuilding. While we are unable to directly assistdomestic animals at this time, we are grateful to Global Giving donors who assisted us in this program. We will continue animal rescues, even without designated funds, when emergency cases come to our atention in flood damaged communities.
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