This great documentary on Project Medishare premiered on Plum TV this past weekend. In case you missed it, take a few minutes to watch the video below.
Posts Tagged ‘Thomonde’
Posted in Uncategorized, tagged Bernard Mevs, Central Plateau, cholera, Colts, community health program, DJ Griot, donate to Project Medishare, Earthquake, earthquake relief, earthquake relief efforts, fundraise for earthquake relief in Haiti, Haiti, Haiti central plateau, haiti earthquake, Haiti earthquake relief, Haiti's Central Plateau, Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare, Indianapolis Colts, NFL, Pierre Garçon, Thomonde, University of Miami on April 5, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
This past weekend a group of Haitian Americans visited Haiti with Project Medishare. The group consisted of wide receiver for the Indianapolis Colts, Pierre Garçon, recording artist Phyllisia Ross & DJ Griot. During their stay, the group toured Project Medishare’s facilities in the Central Plateau as well as the Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare in Port–au-Prince.
The group was able to see the Cholera Treatment Center (CTC) in Mirebalias, the Akamil Production Facility and the Community Health Program in Thomonde as well as the Community Health Program, Maternal Health Center and staff residence in Marmont.
This was only Garçon’s second time returning to Haiti since the earthquake. After the trip, Garçon said that “the work that Project Medishare is doing in Haiti is inspiring. Witnessing it firsthand just proves how critical it is that they are able to continue performing their lifesaving work.”
The group was also able to spend a day at Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare in Port-au-Prince. “I was very impressed and touched by the care the babies in the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit were receiving. We were able to see premature twins arrive in the NICU just as we were walking in,” Ross said. “Haiti is a beautiful country filled with the most resilient people. It is truly heartwarming to know that the most deserving people are able to receive advanced health care because of the Project Medishare staff and volunteers.” Hospital Bernard Mevs houses the only Pediatric neo-natal ICU in Haiti.
Below are a couple of pictures that were taken during their trip.
Posted in cholera epidemic in Haiti, community health program, Friends of Project Medishare, tagged Artibonite region cholera, Central Plateau, cholera, cholera outbreak, cholera prevention and education program, community health agents, Haitian doctors and nurses, Thomonde on October 29, 2010 | 2 Comments »
By Jennifer Browning
Fighting something like a cholera outbreak cannot be done by one organization alone. Project Medishare realizes this and the importance of working with partners who share the same ideology. In this case, it is not just treating cholera but focusing to educate on how to prevent it.
Project Medishare has been directly involved in helping stop the spread of this deadly disease by networking with the Haitian Ministry of Health, Zanmi Lasanté, the American Red Cross and many other partnering NGOs so we can assist as much as possible.
In a meeting this week with health agents, Dr. Pretanville from PIH/Zanmi Lasante, spoke to Project Medishare community health agents about cholera. He detailed what causes the disease, how to prevent it, and how it can be treated. Joining Dr. Pretanville were other PIH health agents joining Project Medishare in the campaign to educate the community.
Posted in cholera epidemic in Haiti, community health program, water, tagged Artibonite region cholera, Central Plateau, cholera, cholera outbreak, cholera prevention and education program, community health agents, Haitian doctors and nurses, Thomonde on October 27, 2010 | 1 Comment »
By Jennifer Browning
Community health agents and staff spread out among the community again today to continue raising awareness about the cholera outbreak that has devastated the Artibonite region, which is west of Thomonde and other communities Project Medihare serves. In addition to reinforcing their prevention message, the health agents also distributed water purification tablets.
In Thomonde, medical and office staff used a small generator to hook up a sound system to attract attention. At certain points in town, the truck stopped and as people gathered the team would begin talking about the cholera outbreak and how cases had been confirmed in nearby Mirebalais. They also talked about ways to prevent acquiring the disease.
Some people had questions such as why they couldn’t eat raw fruit and vegetables, or why was it no longer safe to eat fish from the nearby river. The Medishare staff patiently answered all questions and then began to explain how to use the water purification tablets before distributing them to all who gathered.
Due to the rapid progression of the illness along with concerns that many patients may be remaining at home when symptoms become present, Project Medishare is working actively within the communities in the Central Plateau. Project Medishare’s
community health agents are actively participating in our education and prevention campaign. They have not only spread out through our communities, but have also penetrated areas in nearby Hinche.
These health agents are using motorcycles to reach the most rural areas we serve and are equipped with megaphones to gather attention of the people. At these community meetings they are distributing items to help keep the community safe such as chlorine tablets, liquid bleach and oral rehydration kits.
Community health agents meet with Project Medishare medical staff to further discuss cholera prevention and education campaign
Posted in cholera epidemic in Haiti, community health program, Integrated Community Development Program, medical training in Haiti, water, tagged Artibonite region, Baille Touribe, Central Plateau, cholera, cholera outbreak, community health agents, grassroots organizations empowering Haitian community, Haiti cholera, Haitian doctors, Haitian nurses, oral rehydration solution, Partners in Health, Thomonde, water purification tablets, Zanmi Lasante on October 26, 2010 | Leave a Comment »
By Jennifer Browning
Forty community health agents gathered at the Project Medishare office in Thomonde today to meet with Country Director Marie Chery, Dr. Serge Pintro, Zanmi Lasante doctors and Project Medishare medical staff. After the meeting the staff handed out water purification tablets and oral rehydration solution to community health agents. The health agents will distribute these items to those in their community reminding them how important it is they follow specific prevention guidelines.
Project Medishare medical staff reinforced the prevention guidelines.
Federick Fanel, a health agent with Partners In Health’s sister organization, Zanmi Lasante, was also invited to attend to help spread the word in the community. Fanel, who is also a teacher in Thomonde, said he learned much at the meeting.
“They not only reinforced the importance of boiling and treating water, but also how important it is to disinfect the latrines. In rural Haiti, there are many people without latrines, so it is important that we instruct them how to properly build a pit latrine by digging a deep hole, and more importantly covering it properly after use.”
Fanel said that he also learned how to instruct others on how to make their own oral rehydration solution, if they did not have any of the ready-made packets on hand.
During the meeting Dr. Malou Phanord also stressed to the health agents how important home visits were at this time.
“Home visits are even more important today, because there may be some who have symptoms and stay at home,” she said.
Should a health agent notice a person with cholera symptoms, Project Medishare community health nurse Wiseline Celestine also gave specific instructions on what the health agent should do. Because cholera severely dehydrates its victim, it can kill within hours.
“If someone has diarrhea as a symptom, before you take them to the hospital, it is important to immediately start giving them the rehydration solution,” Celestine told the health agents. “This will help them stay hydrated on their way to the hospital. Many of the deaths in Artibonite were on the way to the hospital, because they were not able to hydrate before leaving for the hospital.”
She then talked about how it was necessary for all the water people used to be purified.
“It is important to tell them to use these purification tablets to not only purify the water they drink, but all water,” she said. “They must treat the water they bathe in, the water where they wash their dishes and their clothes. It is a lot of effort, but it is very necessary!”
Benet Joacime, a supervisor for health agents stationed in very rural Baille Touribe said he appreciates meetings like the one today because it allows for good communication between the Project Medishare medical staff and the health agents.
“When we learned that cholera had started in the Artibonite, we immediately went out to our sections and started educating about preventing cholera,” Joacime said.
For Joacime, he said it was important to make sure all of the community health agents in his area were organized and understood how to educate each area about prevention.
“It is a big responsibility because I have to make sure my community is safe,” he said, “so I have to put more leadership out to my agents, and be really organized to make sure everyone understand how important this is.”
He continued to explain how the health agents are using all of Project Medishare’s resources to spread the word. Health agents who oversee hard to reach areas are given motorcycles and all agents are given megaphones to speak to large groups and community education rallies.
At these community cholera prevention meetings, Benet said people listen closely.
“From what we see, people are very afraid of this disease,” he said. “They listen on the radio and they hear how bad things are in the Artibonite, so they really know how important it is to follow our instructions.”
When we were notified of the outbreak, the purification tablets and disinfectants weren’t available for us to distribute to the communities,” Joacime said. “People were worried. We continually heard ‘how can I protect my family?’ ‘How do we purify the water?’”
Without the purification tablets to distribute, Joacime said that health agents stressed the importance of boiling water, cooking food thoroughly and steering clear of raw fruits and vegetables. However, now they can help the people in their community go one step further in making sure the water they use is clean.
“Now that we have these important items to hand out to the people. We can go back to our communities and as we distribute the purification tablets and rehydration solution, we can reinforce the message,” he said. “We are so grateful that we have these to give to the people in our community to keep them safe.”
*Laurene Leger contributed to this story.
Posted in community health program, Emory Medishare, Morehouse School of Medicine, volunteering, tagged Central Plateau in Haiti, community healthcare, electricity in rural Haiti, Emory, Emory School of Medicine, Haiti, Morehouse School of Medicine, progress in rural Haiti, Project Medishare, roads built in rural Haiti, Thomonde on August 11, 2010 | Leave a Comment »
By Dr. Tisha Titus*
We arrived in Haiti six months to the day after the 2010 earthquake, not quite knowing what to expect the conditions in Port-au-Prince to be. Would we be safe in transit? Would the roads taking us out of the city be blocked or damaged? Were the conditions really what had been shown on the news?
Flights into the country were difficult for us, in part due to a massive influx of relief workers and other organizations, but also in part from damage to part of the airport that was in the process of being repaired.
As we walked the several blocks to the temporary parking, the lines for outbound flights were out the door and down the street. As we winded through the city, there were some small areas of damage, but massive piles of rubble were notably absent. As we continued, most of what I saw seemed striking similar to what I had seen before the earthquake – in progress construction, demolition, renovation and the occasional unfinished project. Then came the tent cities.
As we neared the outskirts of the city, the sea of white tents came into view. Definitely suboptimal living conditions, but tolerable given the circumstances and lack of other options. As we passed through, there were UN guards at the entrance to one area with a line of port-a-potties seen in the background. A few scattered faces walked through the maze of tents, mostly women and children tending to daily chores that provide some semblance of normalcy as they work to rebuild their lives. In the few seconds it took to pass the tent city, we could all see the aftermath of the quake – not so much rubble, but shattered lives of the many who had lost nearly everything.
As we talked about what we saw and made comparisons from past trips, we all settled into our seats, gearing up for the ride to the Central Plateau. Those of us, who had come previously, already knew the road “experience.” We had told the new folks in great detail about the bumpy roller coaster ride up and over the mountain. Fast moving trucks close the edge of the cliff, abrupt darting to miss potholes the size of small cars, and intermittent games of highway chicken – all part and parcel for the ride once the pavement ends.
We continued to brief the new folks on what to expect during the daily clinics and then I noticed something. I recalled that last year a short section of the road had been paved, complete with drainage and cliff barriers, but I did not recall any intersections on that stretch of road, and we had just driven through one. I started to pay better attention to the construction and also noticed what appeared to be concrete power poles lining the road. There were also diversion culverts being put in to prevent the usual road wash-out during the rainy season.
I was amazed. The drive that took us over four hours last year was only about two and a half hours this year, with an overwhelming majority of the road paved, tarred or graded and a least two or more lanes wide. There were trucks, backhoes, packers and graders for the actual road construction, but the intricate details of the roadside drains and much of the culvert work appeared to be done without the benefit of machinery. The newly transformed road and soon-to-be power poles took us right into Thomonde, where there were piles of pavers waiting to be put down for the roads there. We started each clinic trip on solid pavement, which significantly reduced our travel time…except for the day our lead truck settled into foot-deep mud. It was also our safety when the rains shut down our clinic early and we scurried like mad to get in the trucks and get out – the pavement let us know that we were on solid ground and would make it back to Thomonde without the risk of getting stuck.
Posted in community health program, Friends of Project Medishare, Morehouse School of Medicine, tagged community health program, Haiti central plateau, Marmont, Morehouse School of Medicine, pediatric resident, Thomonde, University Partnership Program on July 14, 2010 | 1 Comment »
By Jennifer Browning
As part of Project Medishare’s University Partnership Program, Morehouse School of Medicine is working with Project Medishare’s community health staff in Haiti’s Central Plateau this week.
This year there are two returning doctors, and three returning students. Many from the team are surprised with what they have found while working
the mobile clinics.
“It’s really been amazing to see how the Haitian community is dedicated to seeing to the well-being of their children and families,” Bande Mangaliso Virgil, a pediatric resident from Morehouse Medical School said. “You see how dressed up they are to come to clinic and how long they wait to be seen.”
Bande said that with all the negative imagery the media reports about Haiti, that there is actually hope even here, in rural Haiti.
“You see how far this country has come with the limited resources, because we hear in the media in the U.S. just about the turmoil and negative coverage when there is actually a lot of hope and progress here,” she said. “I mean they have along way to go, but I think programs like Project Medishare and just the commit of physicians globally that a lot of great things can happen here and Haiti. Here there is already a community that is receptive to having outsiders come in to help build infrastructure, help with healthcare and education.”
Bande said that while she is a resident, that working in Haiti this week has taught her to rely more on her instincts when she is diagnosing and treating patients.
“In the U.S. we rely heavily on technology like ultra sounds, X-rays and CT Scans. Being here I have to rely on clinical judgment based off a good history from a patient and a physical exam to make sound decisions for patient care,” she said. “That is sort of like a dying art in medicine right now and the way were are trained, and so I find this experience invaluable right now.”