Venezuela faces a complex humanitarian emergency that is expanding and cascading throughout the Latin American region and around the globe. New research from ICASO and ACCSI reveal that health, economic, security and social wellbeing projections are far worse than previously estimated.
In November 2017, ICASO and ACCSI published their first report on Venezuela’s catastrophe, entitled Triple Threat: Resurging epidemics, a broken health system and global indifference to Venezuela’s crisis. The report warned that if the world continued to ignore the toxic mix of ineptitude, ignorance and indolence perpetuated by the current Venezuelan government, the resurgence of epidemics would risk failing to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
ICASO and ACCSI have just released a new update to the initial report, which highlights the most important milestones throughout 2018 and the beginning of 2019 with respect to HIV, malaria and tuberculosis in Venezuela. The results are sobering:
- Venezuela has some of the highest numbers of undernourished people in the region (3.7 million or 11.7% of its population).
- More than 3.5 million people have fled Venezuela, in search of food, health care, work and protection.
- Venezuela was responsible for 53% of all malaria cases and 80% of all malaria deaths in Latin America and the Caribbean in 2017.
- There has been a 24% increase in the number of new HIV infections between 2010 and 2016. Viral load suppression is at 7%.
- A total of 10,185 (31.8 per 100,000 population) new and relapse TB cases were recorded in 2017, up 41% from 2014.
Additionally, the rapid deterioration of the living conditions of the Venezuelan population requires realistic, concrete and immediate responses. Any delay in making and implementing decisions to address this deterioration translates into increasing rates of morbidity and mortality.
Triple Threat calls for the urgent streamlining of plans to prevent the further loss of life and human dignity among people living with HIV and affected by TB, malaria, and other health conditions. Failure to do so not only affects Venezuela; left unchecked, these resurgent epidemics threaten global health security.