Coronavirus outbreaks at border put Haitian migrants at risk

By David Waldstein

As the coronavirus spreads across Latin America and the Caribbean, public health officials are flagging outbreaks cropping up in several border regions, particularly the one between Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

The Pan American Health Organization said on Tuesday that it was focusing its efforts in these rural frontier areas, where populations are on the move and medical facilities are lacking. Indigenous people and migrants, vulnerable under normal circumstances, face even greater risks now.

“The increase of transmission in these areas is cause for serious concern and immediate action,” Dr. Carissa F. Etienne, the director of the PAHO, said.

In addition to the Haiti and the Dominican Republic, Etienne cited spikes in other border areas, including the one between Costa Rica and Nicaragua and the Amazon region that Brazil shares with its neighbors.

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