Fears that there may be an outbreak of disease in the warn torn Lebanese capital of Beirut are growing.
GV PAN DOWN TO: rubbish in street (2 shots)
SV: children queuing for water and water bottles being filled (5 shots)
GV EXTERIOR: medical centre
SV INTERIOR person receiving injection for smallpox and typhoid (2 shots)
SV: Lebanese doctor speaking
DOCTOR: "Well at the moment I think that the health hazard is not very serious because people have become very health conscious but in the future when the water comes back that maybe the health hazard, an increased health hazard such as an outbreak of typhoid and communicable diseases".
With no sign of a settlement in the civil war a leading Lebanese health expert, Professor Aftim Acra, Chairman of the Environmental Health department at the American University of Beirut on Friday (9 July) called for Lebanon to be declared a disaster area. He also appealed for international agencies to lose no time in supplying drugs, vaccines, water disinfectants and pest killers. If an epidemic does break out, he said, there are inadequate supplies to cope with it in Beirut.
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Background: Fears that there may be an outbreak of disease in the warn torn Lebanese capital of Beirut are growing.
SYNOPSIS: The city has been battered mercilessly by warring factions in the last 15 months and as each month goes by the city's services deteriorate. Putrid mounds of rubbish litter many streets, producing a foul stench and providing ideal breeding grounds for flies, cockroaches and rats. There is a total blackout except for hospitals and emergencies and also a critical water shortage. When the power cut out the pumping stations became useless so for the last six weeks well water has been reticulated into the water system. This means that people have to get their drinking water from taps in the street and even this is getting scarce.
But doctors are worried and medical centre are busy vaccinating as many people as possible aga???st smallpox, typhoid and cholera. Some isolated cases of typhoid have already been reported. One doctor spoke about his f???rs.