Health authorities in Central America have been deploying field teams for damage assessment, surveillance, water and sanitation and mental health assessments, after heavy rains caused flooding and landslides in El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua.
In addition to deaths and injuries, damages to health facilities and equipment and losses of health supplies have been reported. Respiratory infections as well as wound and skin infections are being reported from shelters. Standing water is known to increase mosquito populations, raising concerns in areas that are already known to have dengue. Gastroenteritis and leptospirosis are endemic in all four countries and flooding and displacement are expected to cause an increase in the number of cases of these diseases.
Preventive measures for the population include hand washing with water and soap or ash before preparing food, eating or feeding children and after defecating or handling the waste of children or people who are sick.