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Photos sent by David Walton, MD, of Partners In Health and BWH's Division of Global Health Equity, who is caring for patients in Haiti.
United by an amazing spirit of compassion, BWHers have come together to offer an outpouring support to the country of Haiti and their colleagues who have been affected by the devastating earthquake that struck the island Jan. 12.
About 50 physicians, nurses and other caregivers from BWH and MGH, as well as multiple donated supplies and equipment, are in Haiti or on their way. Here at the hospital, ongoing prayer services and other support systems continue for those with family and friends in Haiti.
“The spirit of togetherness that embraces our community is guiding us as we comfort our colleagues who have personal ties to Haiti and as we volunteer to assist those in need in the country,” said BWH President Betsy Nabel, MD.
As a third surgical team prepares to leave for Port-au-Prince, Michael VanRooyen, MD, MPH, of Emergency Medicine, said that more than 1,000 surgical cases are still waiting to be seen outside the hospital in Haiti’s capital city, according to Partners In Health (PIH).
“The surgical presence that the Harvard hospitals have in the field is extensive,” he said. “Our coordinated response across Partners and PIH is really good, and all of our teams are operational and doing well.”
The outpouring of support from staff who want to help continues, with at least 500 volunteers across Partners signing up to offer their time and services in coming weeks. “Our major goals continue to be getting the people with the most appropriate specialties out there to support PIH and other teams and to keep them safe,” VanRooyen said.
Brian Daly, of BWH Emergency Medicine, is working with staff at MGH to coordinate an organized response for volunteers from both institutions. “His work has been key in keeping it all together,” said VanRooyen.
VanRooyen said that BWH will continue to work with PIH about ongoing needs in Haiti, which may focus on wound care and basic health and human services. He plans to collaborate with PIH to replace the volunteers who will be coming home in the next few weeks. “We’ll continue to support PIH as much as possible in coming months.”
In addition to deploying staff to assist in relief efforts, BWH is continuing efforts to support employees affected by the earthquake with a coordinated response from the EAP, HR, Chaplaincy and Social Work. The departments came together earlier this week to provide Haitian employees with resources, information and emotional support to help them cope. (See page 2.)
Visit BWHPikeNotes.org/Haiti for regular updates, employee resources and other information pertaining to the hospital’s response to Haiti.