THE COUNTRY OF HAITI
Haiti is located on the island of Hispaniola. It is only a short 681 miles from Florida. Haiti occupies the western third of the island of Hispaniola. The Dominican Republic occupies the other two-thirds. Haiti is in the Caribbean Sea and lies between Cuba and Jamaica. It has a land space of 27,750 miles and is slightly smaller than the state of Maryland. The terrain is mostly hilly and the weather is tropical. The Capitol of Haiti is Port-au-Prince. The island lies in the middle of the hurricane belt. From June to October is rainy season and the island is subject to flooding. It is considered the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.
The population in Haiti is over nine million. There is excess mortality due to the diseases of poverty such as infectious diseases, cholera and food and waterborne diseases. This fact results in a lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, reduced populate growth rates and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than otherwise would be expected. The infant mortality rate is 71.7 deaths to every 1000 births. The life expectancy in Haiti is 63.5 years which is lower than that of it’s neighbors, Cuba, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic.
On 12 January 2010, an earthquake claimed many lives and disintegrated many buildings, including medical and treatment facilities in Port-au-Prince within seconds. The magnitude 7 earthquake, was powerful enough to destroy most of the city, put the medical system back to the most rudimentary stage with few facilities and overloaded the hospitals with the wounded people. Between 46,000 and 300,000 Haitians died and most areas were forced to wait for Doctors without Borders humanitarian aid for over a month due to the critical devastation of roads and airports.