This is an interesting article with fascinating historical insights. However, we must not lose sight of the fact that our greatest danger lies in the future, and not too far ahead.
In two short months the cholera will emerge again in the Artibonite, where it originated and will bring with it many more cases.
The official government policy is that cholera will be treated at Ministry of Health facilities, and not at hospitals such as ours. We concur with this policy, but note with regret that our two local MSPP facilities have not yet been given the resources to address this great challenge. There is a great deal of discussion among all of us who are partners in providing health services in this region, but this by itself does not provide resources.
During the first two peaks of cholera, HAS expended almost a half-million (unbudgeted) dollars in infrastructure, staffing and logistical expenses.
Our governmental partners in this region are professionally qualified to manage the predicted demand, but not unless they receive the support which they need to hire staff, establish treatment centers, and receive life-saving medicines and supplies.
Ian G. Rawson, PhD
The CEO's principal residence will be at the hospital campus in Deschapelles. Familiarity with French and the capability to learn Haitian Kreyol are preferred. For more information, go towww.tylerandco.com.
The hospital maintains staff in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for financial management, development, medical supplies procurement and communications. More information is available at www.hashaiti.org.
On Saturday February 25th, at Michelangelo’s Banquet Centre, 375 humanitarians came together insupport of maternal and child health at Hôpital Albert Schweitzer –Haiti. This 9th annual “Haiti Happening”,sponsored by the Canadian Friends of HAS, included an authentic Haitian meal; a Silent Auction; a MarketPlace; prizes; a presentation about the current situation at the hospital; a new video. The event raised over$30,000 with more donations still coming in.One highlight of the evening was an inspirational Power Point Presentation by guest of honour,Dr. Ian Rawson. As the son of HAS co- founder, Gwen Mellon, and in his present capacity as ManagingDirector of the hospital, Dr. Rawson brought a lot of credibility to his report. Some of the topics that Dr.Rawson focused on were the HAS … readiness for the next spike in cholera cases; leadership in building 100latrines a month; reforestation initiative (600,000 trees to date … 1,000,000 by 2014); class of 220 traditionalbirthing attendants who facilitate three checkups for pregnant women; encouragement of physiotherapiststo complement the largest prosthetic and rehabilitation centre in the Carribean; need for an anaesthesiologistand supporting nurses.Another highlight was a new video, created by James and Andrea Harvey. The fast-paced video,described by CFHAS Board member, Mick Stewart, as a counterpoint to Dr. Rawson’s presentation, depictedlife at the hospital from the early days to the present. Mr. Stewart, on behalf of everyone in CFHAS, paidrespects to Rhoda Berquist and Peter Johnson, Canadian Friends of HAS members who passed away thisyear. The video was dedicated to these two fine people. The entire audience’s attentiveness throughout Dr.Rawson’s talk and the showing of the video was indicative of the high level of interest in the compellinginformation being presented.The planning committee, headed by Hilda Reinauer-Stark, was very pleased with the results of theirefforts. The Silent Auction, featuring 70 creative works by Haitians and 100 similarly creative works byHamilton area artisans, was abuzz with interest in the “one of a kind” items. The Market Place, with authenticHaitian products like vanilla and coffee, also drew a lot of interest. Hameed Shaqq, the pan drummer, did anexcellent job of entertaining during the cocktail hour. David Shuttleworth, in his 6th year as Master ofCeremonies, was in top form. Dana Frewin and her staff at Michelangelo’s put on a wonderful meal whichincluded the delectable “Smuggler’s Cake”. The Reverend David Anderson focused everyone’s attention as hereferenced “all God’s children” in the grace. CFHAS Chair, Brad Berquist, offered thanks to all whocontributed to the event, provided an update on CFHAS contributions to the hospital ($760,000 to date) andinvited further donations to the hospital.Special thanks were offered to Peller Estates (who donated the wine on the tables), Via Rail and theStratford Shakespearean Festival (who donated big prizes), a host of local businesses (who also donatedprizes), and Tony from Anton Video Productions.The 10th annual “Haiti Happening” will be held on Saturday February 23rd, 2013. The hope is thatthe Canadian Friends of HAS will close in on the $1,000,000 mark for donations to the hospital. All thosewith a “heart for Haiti” can help to realize that goal. Donations are always welcome through the CFHASwebsite (www.canadianhashaiti.ca) or by mail (P.O. Box 827, Hamilton ON L8N3M8 … cheque made outto “Canadian Friends of HAS”).