UN provides $1.3 million for China quake survivors

May 26th, 2008 - 2:54 pm ICT by admin  

Manila, May 26 (DPA) The World Health Organisation (WHO) said Monday it has received $1.3 million in emergency funds from the UN to provide medical supplies and support for survivors of China’s devastating earthquake. WHO’s regional office, which is based in Manila, said the money provided by the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund would strengthen humanitarian relief programmes and ensure that critical, life-saving activities were functioning in affected areas.

“WHO will strengthen China’s power to reduce the risks of epidemic outbreaks and to treat any cases of communicable diseases that appear,” said Eric Laroche, assistant director general for WHO’s Health Action in Crises cluster.

“Damaged health facilities must start treating survivors as quickly as possible for injuries, potential diarrhoeal diseases and acute respiratory infections and psychosocial trauma,” he added.

WHO is also sending a team of experts to China to support government efforts to reconstruct health care services and support disease control efforts.

The magnitude 8.0 earthquake that struck May 12 killed more than 62,000 people in south-western China, while almost 24,000 were still missing. Premier Wen Jiabao has said he feared the death toll could exceed 80,000.

The disaster left around five million people homeless with at least 436,000 homes destroyed.

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