- Title: Bolivian villages on the frontlines of wildfires get medical lifeline
- Date: 27th September 2019
- Summary: PALESTINA, BOLIVIA (SEPTEMBER 26, 2019) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF FIRES BURNING IN FOREST MAKANATE, BOLIVIA (SEPTEMBER 26, 2019) (REUTERS) GENERAL VIEW OF LOCAL VILLAGE NEAR WHERE FIRES ARE BURNING HEN AND CHICKS VARIOUS OF LOCALS PREPARING FOOD IN KITCHEN OF HOME (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) LOCAL, MARIA SUPERPI, SAYING: "There was smoke here, everyone, the children are in a bad state with our eyes and throats affected, it hurts, we cough because of the smoke, there's a lot of heat. And children are coughing and have headaches." VARIOUS OF SUPERPI SERVING FOOD LOCALS EATING LOCAL RINGING MAKESHIFT BELL AT LOCAL COMMUNITY GENERAL VIEW OF MAKESHIFT MEDICAL CLINIC SET UP AT COMMUNITY LOCALS AT CLINIC MEDIC CHECKING ID OF RESIDENT VARIOUS OF MEDIC WITH LOCAL PATIENTS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MEDIC, LUIS ALBERTO SENSANO, SAYING: "We are here conducting medical checks on the Makanate community. This community has been affected by the forest (fire) disaster, which has been an environmental problem and (health problems) are mainly because of the smoke. There are respiratory infections, this is a community with minors under five years of age and at-risk groups like the elderly." MEDIC CHECKING PATIENT LOCALS WAITING AT CLINIC VARIOUS OF MEDIC CHECKING LOCALS LOCAL WOMAN WITH MOUTH COVER ON HER AS SHE HOLDS HER BABY LOCALS WITH MOUTH COVERS ON THEIR FACES (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MEDIC, LUIS ALBERTO SENSANO, SAYING: "We've seen acute diarrheal diseases more than anything in children under two years of age, five years of age. For adults we have seen more than anything issues with bronchitis. We have seen conjunctivitis, allergies, we have seen first-degree burns when we have worked with soldiers (battling the fires)." PALESTINA, BOLIVIA (SEPTEMBER 26, 2019) (REUTERS) GENERAL VIEW OF LOCAL COMMUNITY VARIOUS OF WOMAN FILLING UP BUCKET WITH WATER WOMAN CARRYING WATER TO HER HOME VARIOUS OF WOMAN PREPARING FOOD LOCALS IN DIRT ROAD IN COMMUNITY MEDICS DURING MEETING WITH LOCALS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MEDIC, LUIS ALBERTO SENSANO, SAYING: "Many people come for medical care and we are providing free medical care, free medications, absolutely everything that we can provide for them. It's not just medical care but also words of encouragement because there are people who have lost everything." VARIOUS OF LOCAL FAMILIES VARIOUS OF MEDIC TAKING PRESSURE FROM PATIENT VARIOUS OF MEDIC WITH PATIENT LOCALS WAITING AT MAKESHIFT CLICK MEDIC CHECKING KIT OF SUPPLIES VARIOUS OF MEDICS APPLYING EYE DROPS ON LOCALS MEDIC WITH LOCALS
- Embargoed: 11th October 2019 16:21
- Keywords: wildfires Bolivia fires environment health medics Palestina Makanate
- Location: PALESTINA + MAKANATE, BOLIVIA
- City: PALESTINA + MAKANATE, BOLIVIA
- Country: Bolivia
- Topics: Disaster/Accidents,Wildfires/Forest Fires,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA001AYFLLQF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Wildfires raging through Bolivia's forest have left deep scars on the country's rich biodiversity.
For residents living on the frontlines of the flames, the fires have taken a toll on their health.
The fires this year are Bolivia's worst in at least two decades, with the size of burned land across the country nearly doubling in under three weeks, destroying swaths of biodiverse forest and ranches and farms that sustain thousands of people.
Authorities have set up special mobile clinics to tend to people suffering respiratory problems and other illnesses from the smoke. The service is provided free of charge for residents in these subsistence farming communities who otherwise would not be able to afford to see a doctor.
Wildfires in Bolivia this year have spread over 4.1 million hectares (16,000 square miles) through Sept. 15, up from 2.1 million hectares less than three weeks earlier, according to the Bolivian environmental group Fundacion Amigos de la Naturaleza.
The area burned this year has already topped the previous record since the turn of the century, 3.8 million hectares in 2010.
(Production: Santiago Limachi, Monica Machicao)
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