Link of the Day: Haiti 48 hours later [Boston Globe's Big Picture]

Haiti 48 hours later from Boston Globe’s Big Picture

A woman walks among debris in Port-au-Prince, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010.

Haitians set up impromtu tent cities thorough the capital after an earthquake measuring 7.0 rocked the Haitian capital.

Three and a half weeks may have passed, but the situation on the ground is still much the same as what is shown in this photo series. The major differences are that the search and rescue operations have come to a close. The field hospital at MINUSTAH logbase where much triage of earthquake victims was occurring has also closed. The type of medical personnel needed on the ground has shifted. Initially surgeons, especially orthopedic surgeons, were in high demand to deal with trauma, fractures and amputations. Now many of these patients require post-operative care. The 1000+ amputees will require intense physical therapy. An untold number will need grief counseling. Many doctors have answered the call, including my good friend Dr. Megan Coffee, who is manning the TB tent at the general hospital (see Haiti Hospital’s Fight Against TB Falls to One Man in NYTimes). Unfortunately, nurses who spend much more time delivering care to individual patients than doctors ever can are in short supply. As we move out of the early phase of the post-earthquake response, infectious diseases ranging from diarrheal diseases to tuberculosis are becoming a grave concern. Most of the remains of quake victims that are visible (i.e. not under rubble) have been cleared, burned or buried. Many will never find the bodies of their loved ones to give them a proper burial.