After the quake: Trip #3

The third trip, we were accompanied by Drs. Samah and Asmah Nasser and Jennifer Eddy, an RN from the RNICU at Covenant Healthcare of Saginaw Michigan. By the third trip, the makeshift neonatal unit at the University of Miami Tent Hospital was overrun with infectious disease and prematurity. I don’t think Jennifer ever left that small room with small and large children on ventilators with their mothers (if they had them) doing everything they could to help. The pediatric and neonatal staff working that week under less than optimal circumstances were heroic! For those first monthly trips in January, February and April, we worked out of the tent hospital with Medishare for the evening shifts and during the day, anyone who could would go to care for people at the Les Bours school community. Jennifer never had an opportunity to leave because of the acuity and volume of patients in her care. She truly was the saving grace for the pediatricians assigned to that week at Medishare. The circumstances became more dire as the supplies began to run out, the media attention waned and the rains began to fall on the newly established “tent cities”. At least we were able to fly in and out of PAP (albeit costing $800-$900 per plane ticket). Even now, airlines continue to capitalize on the fact that there really isn’t any other way for the businesses and missionaries to get into and out of Haiti.