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  • Hurricane Isaiah category 1, Bahamas, July 31, 2020.

    Hurricane Isaiah category 1, Bahamas, July 31, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 4 August 2020
Opinion

The hurricane season complicates epidemiological response capabilities in Central America and the Caribbean.

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) is concerned about the damage the hurricane season may cause to the most vulnerable Central American and Caribbean families.

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In this area, over 70 million children are affected by the hurricane season and the COVID-19 pandemic affects the disaster preparedness of these countries.  

UNICEF is highly concerned that a powerful storm could seriously undermine ongoing efforts to halt transmission of the new coronavirus in an area already badly affected by the disease.

Overcrowding in emergency shelters or displacement sites would make it very difficult to guarantee physical distance and adequate hygiene measures.

The destruction or damage of water, sanitation, and health infrastructure would further complicate the complex scenario.

The Caribbean region is expected to experience an increase in the intensity of storms and specialists warn of above-average cyclonic activity in the 2020 season.

The capacity of local health systems is compromised in case of a hurricane. Movement restrictions and budget deficits hinder national efforts to prepare for extreme weather events.

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Bernt Aasen
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