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January 10, 2011

More Charities Criticize Haiti Recovery Effort

A British medical charity says a “takeover” of Haiti’s health system by international relief workers in the wake of last year’s earthquake has undermined relief efforts, the Financial Times reports.

The international crisis-medicine group Merlin said the large number and quick turnover of foreign medical teams that lacked disaster experience or language skills sowed suspicion among Haitian residents and hampered treatment.

The relief group ActionAid also issued a report critical of the international Haiti response, citing disputes over land and slow progress on clearing rubble as major obstacles to the country’s recovery and noting that “the provision of safe and secure homes in particular appears to have stalled.”

Ahead of Wednesday’s first anniversary of the quake, Doctors Without Borders, Oxfam, and other aid charities have faulted efforts by donor countries and domestic and international leaders in dealing with health, sanitation, and housing problems.

Read a Chronicle of Philanthropy article on difficulties dogging reconstruction efforts in Haiti.