ORMOC, Philippines (USA TODAY) -- The race to save survivors and bring relief to
typhoon-ravaged areas of the Philippines escalated Tuesday as the United
Nations appealed for as much as $301 million in aid, and several
nations deployed supply ships in an attempt to ward off the growing
threat of a public health crisis.
Four days after Typhoon Haiyan
struck the eastern Philippines, killing an estimated 10,000 people and
displacing as many as 800,000, assistance is only just beginning to
See Also: How you can help Typhoon Haiyan survivors
worry about whether our medical supplies will be enough for the people.
We also worry about disease breaking out, especially up in Tacloban,
where so many died," dentist Mariecon Dayandayan, 26, who has been
assisting doctors treating residents injured in Friday's mega-storm,
told USA TODAY.
Ormoc, on the western side of hard-hit Leyte
Island, is a mess of fallen trees and other debris, while power and
telecoms cables lie underfoot or hang perilously at head height across
Dayandayan said that the city's health office has a
generator, so is able to keep cool its badly needed vaccines, including
for tetanus. "Some other hospitals and clinics are damaged and have no
electricity, so they are not operating," she said.
reporters in Manila on Tuesday, Valerie Amos, the U.N.'s under-secretary
for general humanitarian affairs and emergency relief, said: "We've
just launched an action plan focusing on the areas of food, health,
sanitation, shelter, debris removal and also protection of the most
vulnerable with the government and I very much hope our donors will be
generous. That plan is for $301 million."
The U.N. estimates that as many as 2.5 million people are in need of food.
"There is a huge amount that we need to do. We have not been able to get into the remote communities," Amos said.
Monday, the Pentagon said it was sending an aircraft carrier to the
area to assist in relief efforts and the United Kingdom has also said it
is sending ships and aircraft to the region for humanitarian
assistance. The USS George Washington is expected to arrive within 48 hours.
to data published on the website of the Philippines' Department of
Foreign Affairs, 29 nations have so far pledged aid worth approximately
$54 million. The U.N. previously released $25 million in emergency
assistance. The U.N.'s World Food Program is sending 40 tons of high
energy biscuits. The U.N. has called the scale of destruction
The official death toll from the disaster rose to
1,774 on Tuesday, though authorities have said they expect that to rise
markedly. They fear estimates of 10,000 dead are accurate, and might
even be low. More than 9 million people have been affected across a
large swath of the country, many of them made homeless.
survivors go without access to clean water, food, shelter and medical
help, the greater chance of disease breaking out and people dying as a
result of wounds sustained in the storm.
Communication outages are said to be making coordination with local government departments a major problem in the relief effort.
are organized. We have command and control. But how do we call the
department of social welfare, the department of health, the department
of public works and highways?" Army Brig. Gen. Virgilio Espineli, the
deputy regional military commander, said Tuesday