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#3217: Haitian Community Hospital : Barnes comments

From: J Barnes <jbarnes@massed.net>

With the news that Jean Dominique had been transported to the Haitian
Community Hospital in Frères some of you may be wondering about that
hospital.  The Dominique family has asked that donations be made in his
memory to the hospital.  I want to inform people of the Corbett network
about the hospital because my mother, Dr. Edith Dreyfuss Hudicourt, has been
involved with its creation and functioning for more than 20 years.
The hospital is on Route Freres between Djoumballa and the water fountain.
The entrance is next to a small supermarket (can't remember the name).  It
has the only functioning emergency room in the Petion-Ville area, and
probably the only other 24-hour emergency room in the greater PAP area
besides the General Hospital.   My mother and a group of friends including
Dr. Yvonne Sylvain, the first Haitian Woman MD, created a foundation many
years ago called "Haitian Health and Education Foundation" with the
objective to offer quality health services to a cross section of Haitian
society.  I believed that my mother was inspired to do this because
throughout her life she had to intervene in the care of many close relatives
and work with inadequate health facilities.  She nursed her sister Ghyslaine
Desquiron until she died of lung cancer in January1978.  The same year,
Ghyslaine's 18-year old daughter, Mikal was in a car accident on
Thanksgiving night, taken to Hopital Canape-Vert, and received no care until
my mother was called.  She saw Mikal die from having lost too much blood.
Shortly after that my mother went to visit a newborn grandson at Canape Vert
and found him gasping for air in the neonatal unit.  She was not able to
save him.
L'Hopital de la Communaute Haitienne first opened as an outpatient clinic in
1981 on land donated by the township of Petion-Ville and with money donated
by Haitian families and businesses.    It has since received funds from
other sources (USAID, WHO, UNICEF, Rotary Clubs) as an NGO and received an
award from the WHO for its breastfeeding campaign. The numbers I have now
are from a 1997 brochure which says it has 33 beds, 2 operating room, 1
delivery room, a pediatric center, a dental center, and a 24-hour emergency
center.  It has traveling health workers who provide preventive and
pre-natal care to more remote and poorer areas of Freres to a population
estimated at 66,000.  The Hospital itself had files for 120,000 individuals
in 1997.  They are currently building an addition and a nursing-home for
elderly.  For the last twenty years my mother has donated about half of her
days to the hospital.  If you wish to make a donation, it is tax deductible
in the US:  Haitian Health and Education Foundation 2320 N.W. 102nd Place,
Miami Florida 33172 phone 954-442-8850 fax 954-441-2290.