One week after Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico, 97 percent of the island's 3.4 million residents are still without power and many do not have access to clean, running water. 

Those are conditions that could trigger a public health disaster, says medical ethicist Arthur Caplan

Hospitals, facing power and equipment shortages, are working on overdrive. Public health officials fear that limited access to running water could increase the risk of gastrointestinal diseases. There are also concerns that high mosquito counts could lead to an outbreak of mosquito-borne illnesses like Zika or Dengue fever.

"That is a Zika, or [other] mosquito disease, outbreak waiting to happen," said medical ethicist Arthur Caplan.

The effects could stretch beyond Puerto Rico's borders, too.

Puerto Rico is home to many major manufacturing facilities for pharmaceutical giants like Amgen, AstraZeneca, and AbbVie, and some are concerned that continued outages may leadto drug and devices shortages. In response, the FDA has created a hurricane shortages task force to monitor supplies. 

"There is a real threat of shortage and driving up prices, kind of like what you see with gasoline and heating oil when you had disaster in Texas," Caplan said.

Click above to hear more from medical ethicist Arthur Caplan. And to subscribe to his Everyday Ethics podcast go here.