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Clinic at Airport Hit by Typhoon is Overwhelmed

Residents search through rubble amid scenes of devastation in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban, Leyte, Philippines
Residents search through rubble amid scenes of devastation in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban, Leyte, PhilippinesTacloban, Leyte, Philippines (Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

A run-down, single-story building at the ruined airport in the Philippine city of Tacloban  has become the area’s main medical center for victims of last week’s powerful typhoon.

 Rescuers inspect the heavily damaged airport in the aftermath of typhoon Haiyan  in Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines
Rescuers inspect the heavily damaged airport in the aftermath of typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines (Dondi Tawatao/Getty Images)

Hundreds of injured people, along with pregnant women, children and the elderly, have poured into the building since the typhoon struck on Friday.

The facility doesn’t have much medicine. The few doctors who are there have so far been dealing with cuts, fractures and pregnancy complications. They say they soon expect to see more serious problems, including pneumonia and dehydration.

A massive international aid effort is starting to take shape, but not quickly enough for the 600,000 people who’ve been displaced — many of them homeless, hungry and thirsty.

With the airport battered and roads made impassable by debris, very little aid has arrived in Tacloban. Most of it is stuck in Manila and in Cebu, a 45-minute flight away.

And survivors are becoming more desperate. Mobs that overran a rice warehouse on the island of Leyte collapsed a wall, killing eight people. Security forces today exchanged gunfire with an armed gang.

The official death toll is up to 2,344, but it’s expected to rise.


(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved)

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