Haiti Earthquake, Six Months Later: Where Has All the Money Gone?

Americans have donated over $1 billion to Haiti since the January earthquake.

July 9, 2010, 4:25 PM

July 9, 2010— -- Six months ago, after the catastrophic 7.3 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti, doctors were so desperate for medicine and supplies, some were forced to use vodka to sterilize equipment.

"We have no instruments, plaster of paris," one doctor told us in the days following the earthquake.

Doctors performed surgeries with few supplies and dwindling medicine. ABC News was there with one surgeon as he performed an emergency c-section in a makeshift operating room, under a plastic tarp, while the mother was hemorrhaging. There was no blood to give her.

Today, the tarp where the doctor saved both mother and child is now an empty garage. Across the street is a brand new portable operating room. The surgeons with Doctors Without Borders call it their "holy room."

"These are our sterile supplies," the lead surgeon says as he points to the equipment they so desperately needed.

$165.9 Million For Medical Supplies

Since the relief efforts began, ABC News estimates Americans have donated $1.138 billion dollars to Haiti. Nearly 14 percent of that money, $165.9 million, has gone to medical supplies.

During out trip back six months later, we discovered surgeons now fixing what doctors had to do under primitve conditions the first time around in the days following the catastrophe.

Haitian amputees who lost their limbs have returned for help, trying to fight major infections. This time, doctors are better equipped to help them.

Children, the smallest victims in the earthquake, now have a new pediatric hospital that Doctors Without Borders opened just four weeks ago.

ABC News watched as one mother brought her baby boy to doctors for help. His tiny lungs tested by the dust and rubble.

"On this chart, you see the temperature spikes," the nurse told us.

The mother told us at first, she didn't have much hope for her son to survive.

Now, the baby boy is healthy again, a major recovery and a miracle for his mother.

$105.7 Million For Food And Water

In January, the world watched as Haitians formed long lines desperate for clean water and fresh food.

Of that $1.1 billion donated, $89 million has been spent on food and over $16 million for water.

The World Food Program reports that after the earthquake it fed 200,000 people a day in the first week. Six months later, they're reaching 1.3 million people daily.

ABC News visited a crumbled school where that food is delivered. Under tents, the children ate food that is still so scarce. In many cases, it is their only meal of the day.

In fact, their teachers told ABC News that when the children come in on Mondays, they are exhausted because in many cases, they have not eaten over the weekend.

They pay special attention to children like 8-year-old Tatiana who raised her hand to tell us that she lost both of her parents.

Click Here To Learn How To Donate To Haiti's Recovery.

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