Hal Seifert, overseeing construction in Haiti

Medical Team

A group of people, including two docs and six nurses, from the greater Boston area, Gardner (Gadna), Worcester (Woosta), Westminster (West Minny) and others, recently returned to the states. They were here to conduct clinics in several locations, many of which were far from any definitive care. Some patients had never set foot in a clinic. The way it worked was: there was an intake table, usually staffed by two people, each with excellent translators, the patients each got their vitals taken, weighed, then off to the diagnostic center, four stations, two with docs and two with nurses, then they went, with their intake sheet, complete with diagnosis and treatment, to the pharmacy, and a fairly complete pharmacy it was, drugs on wheels, their order was filled along with soap, lotion, toothbrush, toothpaste, vitamins, and suckers for the youngsters, they then went to see two more nurses with translators to explain to the patients what and how to take their meds, then off they went.

This is a great start, but it doesn’t offer any continuity of care. And THAT is the point of building the clinic and surgical center in Les Ceyes, to offer follow-up care to these wonderful people. For many people, when their medicines are gone their condition will revert, and THAT is really unacceptable.

We also went out into the true middle of nowhere to see the orphans we are care taking of. They are now living under a big tarp, having been evicted from their home by the Department of Health for substandard living conditions. They did a musical/dance performance that was nothing short of amazing. The music was provided by a lone trumpet, a bass drum and a snare drum, played with two sticks. Their ages ranged from four to eighteen. After the performance every child was looked at and treated accordingly.

I am trying to track down some transitional housing kits, which are in evidence all over the country since the earthquake and put them up on the property of Forward in Health. We can get by with two or three, and hopefully we obtain them before it starts raining too much more. They will be living in a mud puddle if we don’t. We’ll see…….

The crew of people were great, we got along like extended family. We ate and played well together, laughed a lot. The docs and nurses had about two hundred years of experience between them, an incredible level of competency. It was a privilege working with them.