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Way Forward In Haiti

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The United States, in partnership with the Haitian government, non-governmental organizations, (or NGOs), U.N. agencies, and international donors has accomplished a great deal in Haiti to date.

In the food sector, the U.S. has supported the U.N. World Food Program and NGO partners to provide food and 2-week rations to more than one million Haitians. The rate of daily service has more than tripled to more than 120,000 people thanks to an improved fixed distribution system targeting 16 sites throughout Port-au-Prince. This has been possible due to the joint efforts of the U.S. military together with the U.N. World Food Program, the Government of Haiti, and a number of NGO partners.

Distributions via coupons given to women for rice and other commodities have been orderly and calm. 250,000 people outside of Port-au-Prince in neighboring cities are also being served. The goal is to ultimately serve 2 million people.

The humanitarian community aims to provide between 240- and 300,000 households with shelter support. Through the combined efforts of NGOs, the United Nations, international agencies, and the Government of Haiti, at least 70,000 households have received plastic sheeting and shelter kits to date. Materials are now in place to serve the additional households that need shelter.

The U.S. continues its trauma and medical service provided by Disaster Medical Assistance Teams and the USNS Comfort. As of February 3, U.S. medical personnel had seen an estimated 32,000 patients. U.N. agencies and the Government of Haiti also began an immunization campaign on February 2 to prevent the spread of disease among vulnerable Haitians.

Water, said U.S. Agency for International Development Administrator Raj Shah, has remained a success story. Approximately 532,000 people are receiving water daily at an estimated 252 sites. That has continued to increase steadily each week. Relief agencies are also expanding distribution of chlorine tablets at water distribution sites to prevent the spread of disease.

The U.S. Agency for International Development is closely coordinating and collaborating with the humanitarian community and other donor countries to reduce the suffering of the estimated 3 million Haitians affected by the devastating quake last month. The United States is making good on the pledges of both President Obama and Secretary Clinton that we will stand with the people of Haiti today, tomorrow and in the months that come.