New York State is partnering with UNICEF to send medical help to Puerto Ricans desperate for basic care and necessities after Hurricane Maria destroyed the island’s infrastructure, Gov. Cuomo announced on Tuesday.
“There are about 67 hospitals on the island. About 50 of those hospitals are actually operating on generator. Many of them are running short of supplies because when you couldn’t get the goods in and you couldn’t distribute the goods, that also involved medical goods and medical equipment,” Cuomo said.
The state is delivering 60,000 emergency supply kits and preparing to send more than 100 medical professionals to the island. The kits will contain water purification tablets, water buckets, soap, toothpaste, detergent and sanitary pads, among other items.
Medical supplies, including tetanus vaccines, antibiotics, first aid products and surgical gear, are on the way to hospitals and community health organizations.
The donations of goods and labor are coming from the UJA Federation of New York, a medical supply charity called Afya Foundation, the Greater New York Hospital Association, unions and others.
Cuomo estimates that the state is coordinating the delivery of roughly $500,000 worth of supplies.