Sunday, April 14, 2013

The 7th day...

... We rested. And snorkeled! Who knew?  We had a much-appreciated down day at a lovely Haitian resort and enjoyed the clear Carribean water.

Tomorrow we hold a half day clinic in a nearby preschool before our flight home.

Our crew of Haitian medical translators - all dedicated young men with remarkable stories of survival and hope- is pictured at right.  We gathered today to hear Rodney's heartbraking story of how he was abandoned as an infant then turned out of his orphanage at age nine to live on the streets.  He is now supporting some abandoned kids as he works toward his dream of opening his own orphanage.  We are so grateful for all our translators and for our wonderful team leaders, Jeff and Terry Clark. This trip has been an eye-opening experience and a blessing to us in so many ways.

Larisa & Derek

Saturday, April 13, 2013

The orphanage

Today's clinic was held at an orphanage where a pastor and his wife have taken in 65 former street kids.  We first saw the children - all well-fed and in pretty good shape compared to those we have seen so far - and then treated people from the community.  The woman pictured with the baby told a touching story: She said she found this newborn abandoned in the street in January. She and her husband are taking care of her despite their own lack of resources. The adoptive mother carefully showed me the record of her first immunizations and we gave her some medications and lots of encouragement.

Derek has gained quite a bit of experience in performing pediatric echoes and gives a daily talk on the prevention and treatment of hypertension, which is endemic in Haiti.  Daniel is a valuable pharmacy team member and knows the difference between ciprofloxacin and cephalexin and lisinopril and atenolol.  This has been a powerful experience for all of us.

Tomorrow we will have a down day at the coast with our team of interpreters then we will hold a brief clinic Monday morning before we fly out in the afternoon.

Bon Je beni ou or may God bless you.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Haiti clinic day 3

We spent the day in a displaced persons community called Canaan, though it is hardly the Promised Land.  Three years after the earthquake many still live in tents, there is no electricity and water is trucked in daily.  We are told the government is making progress with housing and infrastructure, but these people have been left behind. The clinic where we worked is run by a Haitian OB/Gyn with a heart for the poor who is stretched way too thin.  We saw about 125 patients today including  few ill children who were brought from rural areas and needed urgent surgery or hospitalization.  The Mobisante ultrasound came in handy for abdominal complaints and for a young woman Derek diagnosed with cardiomyopathy.  He was able to start her on treatment and the Haitian doctor will help her get appropriate follow up.  Another full day!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

In the mountains

Today we drove into the mountains - about 5000 feet - and held a rural clinic.  We treated many patients with hypertension, anemia, arthritis and infections.  The rate of illiteracy in this community is >90% so we drew pictures along with medication instructions.  A class of Haitian medical translator students followed our team members and learned from our veteran translators.  These photos show the SonoSite MicroMaxx in action - and Daniel transporting it up the mountain.

Tomorrow we leave early to work in a tent camp for people still displaced from the earthquake.

We appreciate your prayers!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Clinic day in the Cite Soleil slum

Today we held a clinic in a school in the roughest part of Port-au-Prince. Despite the 95 degree heat, spirits were high as our team saw almost 200 patients. We saw children with malnutrition and chronic infections and everyone suffered from the consequences of poor access to water. In the clinic, all the children received worming medications and vitamin A and everyone received multivitamins.   Daniel and the pharmacy crew were busy!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

With gratitude

The Haiti Medical team is busy packing and preparing.  We want to thank our family and friends and all those praying for us on this trip.  We also want to thank the organizations supporting the work in Haiti.

Northshore Baptist Church
Mobisante smartphone based ultrasound imaging system
Evergreen Healthcare and Evergreen Surgical Center
Overlake Hospital
American Friendship Foundation

We will post again from Port-au-Prince.

Larisa, Derek and Daniel