Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Haitian Health Foundation

I just returned from my third trip to Jeremie, Haiti. Jeremie is a remote area in the poorest nation in the western hemisphere. Malnutrition, poor sanitiation and inadequate drinking water are among the biggest challenges. As a physician, it affords me the opportunity to diagnose and treat diseases I'd only read about like malaria, tuberculosis and various parasitic infections.

Despite these adverse conditions patients were grateful for whatever treatment is provided. Sometimes that treatment was only a kind word and a smile since there is an extreme shortage of medication and virtually no diagnostic equipment.

The Haitian Health Foundation (HHF) of Norwich, CT is the organization that sponsors the clinic where I worked along with many other outreach efforts in Haiti. Its' founder, Dr. Jeremiah Lowney has been making these trips four times a year for the past 27 years. I had the plaesure of interviewing Dr. Lowney on the "Healthy Rounds" radio program just before leaving for Haiti. http://www.wtic.com/topic/play_window.php?audioType=Episode&audioId=4216171

This trip differed from my other visits because I left with a feeling of hope and pride. My hope was based on having the opportunity to work with a group of young, American volunteers who have left the comforts that we have become accustomed to so that they can help those in need for an extended period of time. My pride was based on the fact that my youngest daughter Stephanie was one of those volunteers.

If you wish to donate time or money to help this outstanding effort please contact HHF at www.haitianhealthfoundation.org

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