Naj, 'Women from Kumburudhoo' Flickr/Najy
Naj, 'Women from Kumburudhoo' Flickr/Najy

Maldivian maladies

The healthcare system in Maldives is burdened by aliments old and new.

In 1978, cholera swept across the Maldives, with one in 12 of the country's 140,000 population affected. Urgent requests were made to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF for transportation, medical equipment and vaccines which were promptly administered – sometimes by force – to the islanders. Two hundred had died by the time the epidemic was declared under control five months later.

"Medicines, trained medical personnel, and funds were all insufficient," noted a report at the time from the US Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, which contributed to the international community's USD 670,000 relief effort.

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Himal Southasian