UN chief names special advisor for Haiti cholera

December 29, 2012

The UN chief on Friday named a US health expert as special advisor in fighting Haiti's cholera epidemic, which has claimed more than 7,750 lives and is widely blamed on UN peacekeepers.

Ban Ki-Moon has appointed Paul Farmer, a doctor and professor at Harvard Medical School, to "help galvanize support for the elimination of cholera in Haiti," the United Nations said in a statement.

He will also be charged with advising "on lessons learned" from the epidemic and "how those can be applied in Haiti and other settings," the statement added, without making any reference to the cause of the outbreak.

Earlier this month, the UN launched an appeal for $2.2 billion to finance a campaign to halt the epidemic, which has exceeded 620,000 cases since it began in October 2010.

Farmer, 53, heads Harvard's department of and . From 2009 to 2012, he also served as deputy to the UN special envoy for Haiti under former US president Bill Clinton.

A huge UN operation has been helping the impoverished country with its political strife and the aftermath of a giant earthquake in January 2010 that killed an estimated 250,000 people.

While a UN investigation found there was no way of knowing what caused the , a growing number of experts, including some from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have said the cholera strain in Haiti matched the prevalent strain in Nepal.

The has been traced to a camp of Nepalese peacekeepers in the town of Mirebalais.

Lawyers for some victims and families of the dead have called on the United Nations to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation and threatened a court case.

UN officials said 70 percent of the $2.2 billion needed in the next decade would be used to build water and . The UN said it would also buy quantities of a new .

Explore further: 500,000 cholera cases expected in Haiti by end 2011: WHO

Related Stories

Haiti cholera death toll nears 7,000: expert

January 6, 2012

Nearly 7,000 people have now died from cholera in Haiti in an epidemic which has become one of the worst of recent decades, a top health official said Friday.

Dominican Republic, Haiti in 10-year cholera fight

October 8, 2012

(AP)—Officials in Haiti and the Dominican Republic are preparing for a long campaign against cholera, the water-borne disease that has sickened tens of thousands of people in the two neighboring Caribbean countries.

UN launches major cholera appeal for Haiti

December 12, 2012

The United Nations on Tuesday launched a $2.2 billion appeal for a campaign to halt a cholera epidemic in Haiti, widely blamed on UN peacekeepers, which has killed more than 7,750 people.

Recommended for you

Older people getting smarter, but not fitter

August 31, 2015

Older populations are scoring better on cognitive tests than people of the same age did in the past —a trend that could be linked to higher education rates and increased use of technology in our daily lives, say IIASA population ...

Higher intelligence score means better physical performance

August 14, 2015

New research reveals a distinct association between male intelligence in early adulthood and their subsequent midlife physical performance. The higher intelligence score, the better physical performance, the study reveals. ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.