Partners In Health: Mon., 1/25 Report From Haiti

Jan 25, 2010, 16:24 ET from Partners In Health

PIH spokespeople in Haiti and Boston available to provide additional insight on the situation

BOSTON, Jan. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Yesterday saw a breakthrough in delivering more desperately needed medical equipment and supplies to help treat, diagnose, and monitor patients. Thanks to support from GE, a plane brought 4 anesthesia machines, 5 x-ray machines, 10 patient monitors, 10 ultra-sound machines, as well as technicians to help set up and operate this equipment, among other donations.  Today, we're expecting to land even more planes with supplies, including 9 more anesthesia machines donated from Partners Health Care and the University of Miami. 

  • PIH is rapidly strengthening staff and facilities in Belladere, a public hospital close to the Dominican Republic that PIH has operated for many years. As more patients leave devastated Port-au-Prince, many are hoping to find medical care across the border in the Dominican Republic. The Belladere facility is strategically placed to treat many of these patients, who may otherwise not survive the journey into the neighboring country, or not find the care they need at Dominican facilities. 
  • PIH is collaborating with the U.S. military to assist in scaling up surgical services and distribution of relief in Haiti. Since the weekend, the PIH medical team at the central University Hospital in Port-au-Prince (HUEH), as well as other PIH facilities in the Central Plateau and Artibonite, have been airlifting patients in need of advanced surgical care to the USNS Comfort, harbored off the coast of Port-au-Prince. However, the Comfort's 1,000 beds are quickly filling up. The military is now turning to PIH to help set up facilities within the country to take on the overflow of surgical cases and to meet the growing need for post-operative care. Additionally the military has turned to PIH's experience on the ground to help distribute and set up tents to shelter patients and those who lost their homes in the earthquake. 
  • Today, PIH co-Founder Dr. Paul Farmer is in Montreal, Canada, attending a meeting of world leaders and public health experts from the G20 nations to discuss the short- and long-term crisis response needed for Haiti. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive are attending, along with delegates from 20 countries, the UN and the World Bank. "Canadian Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon said the conference will review progress of the aid delivery to Haiti since the earthquake.  It will also lay the groundwork for a larger meeting to focus on long-term reconstruction."
  • Fresh back from Haiti, where she arrived within 48 hours of the earthquake to coordinate PIH's response, Medical Director Dr. Joia Mukherjee is available for interviews and media requests. In addition, a surgical team from Partners Healthcare and Dr. Rob Sheridan, a surgeon who had started working at PIH's hospital in Cange just before the earthquake struck, have also recently returned to the U.S. and are available for interviews.


Founded in 1987 by Dr. Paul Farmer, Partners In Health (PIH) is an international health care organization based in Boston that works in 12 countries to deliver high quality health care and to break the cycle of disease and poverty.

PIH has been providing vital health care services in Haiti for more than 20 years and is one of the largest health care providers in the country, working with the Haitian Ministry of Health to deliver comprehensive health care services to a catchment area of 1.2 million across the Central Plateau and the Lower Artibonite Valley. 

PIH had more than 100 doctors, 600 nurses and 4,000 employees on the ground in Haiti working from 12 existing PIH medical facilities in Haiti before the earthquake struck on January 12th.

STAND WITH HAITI: PIH Immediate Response to Earthquake in Haiti

  • PIH quickly established field hospitals in Port-au-Prince, and currently has 20 operating rooms up and running, with 12 functioning 24-hours a day. PIH has been designated by the World Health Organization to serve as the primary coordinators of University Hospital in Port-au-Prince (HUEH).
  • PIH established a relief transfer system to transfer patients from Port-au-Prince (HUEH) to PIH sites in the Central Plateau and Lower Artibonite Valley, which includes 12 clinical facilities already treating patients.
  • PIH was one of the first NGOs to evacuate patients in critical condition to hospitals in the United States and Dominican Republic and is now coordinating the evacuation of patients in critical condition to the United States Naval Ship, the U.S.S. Comfort.
  • PIH has sent 22 plane loads with more than 140 medical volunteers – orthopedic surgeons, anesthesiologists, surgical nurses and other medical professionals – and several thousand pounds of medical supplies to support the more than 4,500 PIH health care providers already in Haiti.
  • The long-term ramifications in Haiti are going to be significant and far-reaching with a new, large group of vulnerable and displaced people. PIH has the experience and commitment to Stand with Haiti for many years to come.

Media Contacts: Andrew Marx, 617-998-8977, (

Meredith Eves, 617-998-8977, (

SOURCE Partners In Health