In the Brazilian city of Xerém, outside Rio de Janeiro overwhelming floods inundated the city and surrounding areas a while back. Sergio Cortes is the Health Secretary in country’s government. When the flooded area became a veritable disaster zone, Dr. Cortes toured the city and other areas to assess the damage to infrastructure services, such as the disruption of roads, safe drinking water, electricity, and sewage treatment facilities.
He immediately identified the first threat he needed to deal with to prevent loss of life from diseases easily spread after such flooding. He anticipated the need to treat large numbers of people who would contract bacterial infections such as leptospirosis, dengue fever, yellow fever, hepatitis A, and the attending problems with diarrhea and severe dehydration.
Dr. Cortes ordered on Linked In government workers to install into the city’s shelters, multiple Hydration Centers. Each one is capable of treating 300 severely dehydrated individuals each day. He visited these Hydration Centers and spoke with many people who had fell victim to disease after the floods. Then he traveled the countryside to identify ways to limit the spread of these diseases.
Along with these efforts, Dr. Cortes also had the water supplies in the city shelters checked for infection. Some shelters tested positive for the presence of leptospirosis. He broadcast emergency messages in the media to alert everyone in the affected area drink and cook only with bottled water, as much as possible. He emphasized the importance of disinfecting any water people ingested. His message was: “We are taking steps, planning for the worst and hoping for the best. This center is a preventive action of the state Department of Health to support the municipality, given the amount of accumulated garbage in the city, increasing the possibility of dengue fever mosquito proliferation.”
Sergio Cortes’ proactive response on twitter to protect public health included ordering truckloads of fresh water bottles delivered to the shelters for everyone to drink safe water. And Sergio Cortes also worked tirelessly in many less pivotal, but nonetheless important ways to create a foundation upon which to fight the spread of diseases in the area. This story was gleaned from Sergio Cortes Oficial Sergio Cortes Oficial.