Witnessing the devastation in Haiti first-hand has been a
rollercoaster of emotion–sadness over the loss of lives and joy for miracles of survival. MedShare arrived on the ground in Haiti with an amazing team of doctors from International Medical Alliance just three days after the devastating earthquake struck, killing an estimated 200,000 and leaving another 250,000 injured and in critical need of medical services.
It’s these injured survivors that have consumed our relief efforts. We are stationed just across the border in the Jimani, Dominican Republic, where hundreds of victims from Port-au-Prince are being transported for medical attention. The news reports of primitive care conditions have been largely accurate. While supplies are getting through, keeping pace with demand is overwhelming.
On Tuesday, January 19, I was appointed logistics manager to oversee the setup of a make-shift post-op facility in a church near the hospital in Jimani. Setup involved placing 30 mattresses on the floor and trying to secure needed supplies such as food, bandages and pain medication from the hospital’s limited supply. At any given time, post-op care is being provided to more than 100 patients who arrive from the hospital by ambulance.
Most these patients have undergone amputations since their limbs, which were crushed by the debris, became infected with gangrene because of the long amount of time before their injuries were treated. While the outcomes for some survivors seem bleak, the resilience of the human spirit is prevalent. Just yesterday, three patients began to sing in Creole and wave their hands. In the midst of pain and suffering, it was a beautiful gift. The Haitian people are so strong.
Thank you for your continuing support in getting these medical supplies to Haiti. More to come…A.B.