Haiti: Hurricane Matthew Relief Effort
Introducing New Educational Technology Component: January-July 2018
October 11, 2018
Summary of Activities
Centre Hospitalier Sainte Marie (CHSM) is a new private hospital located in downtown Port-au-Prince, the country’s capital. The hospital dictum is “Put the patient first,” and this motto is a primary motivator in their work, as evidenced by their pursuit of methods and resources to organize affordable quality care packages for the Haitian population. They describe themselves with pride as a “socially conscious private hospital” and believe that better access to care requires ample resources, both human and material, as well as the establishment of partnerships with third-party payers.
CHSM is willing to align its operations with donors and like-minded organizations in order to implement care programs and packages designed to increase both the services offered and the population they are offered to, including both out-of-pocket and insured patients and low or no-income patients. The hospital’s mission, values, and policies made it a perfect fit for our surgical program as well as other larger projects. The care programs that this hospital aims to offer are in alignment with RMF’s main goal in Haiti since its involvement in 2010.
Planned Structure of CORE Project
With primary funding pledged to RMF’s activities in Haiti after Hurricane Mathew’s destructive path through the southern portion of the country in 2016, we decided to capitalize on our goals as well as CHSM’s vision and care programs to implement a Community Outreach and Rehabilitation Effort (CORE) project, with 6 major components:
- Educational component: Providing long-term educational activities directly in the communities, teaching at-risk populations the means to understand and prevent communicable diseases and epidemics, mainly fecal-oral diseases.
- Surgical component: Improving and exponentially developing specialized and increasingly complex surgical procedures, for both children and adults in need of such secondary or tertiary care.
- Emergency care: Subsidizing increased access to emergency care at CHSM Hospital, a modern facility where every patient will be received, stabilized, and also treated through comprehensive care coverage models.
- Family care: Subsidizing medical and surgical treatment of identified and/or at-risk families with low or no income means and offering them year-long access to primary and secondary care at CHSM Hospital.
- Disaster response: Organizing and implementing fast and pre-organized response missions into areas struck by natural disasters and epidemics.
- Mobile clinics: Improving regular outreach missions into numerous communities and expanding the coverage of the project incrementally.
Communicating Health and Wellness
The healthcare education program successfully reached a total of 10 communes and municipalities in these areas, forming and equipping 122 health clubs. We are striving to make these health clubs self-sustainable and keep the messages communicated alive and constantly renewed by creating and distributing work tools and popularizing important knowledge in “good health habits through songs” audiovisual messages.
Introduction of SEMOST
Utilizing Technology to Educate
During the first 6 months of 2018, we have been working towards combining the medical knowledge we now culturally disperse through catchy and informative health songs with information technology through SEMOST (Online Multimedia Education Seminars in Total Health).
SEMOST is a product that delivers health education through the popular app Google Classroom. It offers democratized, personalized, interactive, and multimedia access to courses in total health accessible to all through any connected device (tablets, phones, and computers, regardless of the operating system). All that is needed is a low-speed Internet connection, a connected device, and a Gmail account.
Providing Surgeries for New Patients
Even with the beginning of the new school year, we have finally been able to select and prepare some of the patients who were scheduled before the period of unrest, who are also not encumbered by school requirements. Amongst the selected 7 patients in the session, we have:
- Loudiana Gerve, 9
- Valentine Joseph, 18 months
- David Frérélus, 10
- Rotchenda St. Valére, 6
- Christina Thémistocle, 9
Click to enlarge
The previously mentioned group of 10 children are scheduled to complete their surgical treatments during the month of October. After the completion of these surgeries, our main goals during the next 3 to 6 months will include:
- Securing the funding to fully implement the CORE project in Haiti with year-long operations offering emergency, primary, and secondary family care.
- Expanding the surgical component to include general surgery treatments.
- Implementing a more comprehensive educational component with regular mobile clinic outreaches.
- Establishing a disaster relief fund to proactively prepare for possible natural disasters.
- Working towards the implementation of all major components of the CORE project.
- Significantly increasing selection of surgical cases, as increases in care coverage and steady scheduling of mobile clinic outreaches with our Mobile Medical Unit (MMU) should consolidate our involvement in and perception of the communities we serve.
- Providing full comprehensive coverage for 1,500 selected families of up to 5 members (a maximum of 7,500 Haitians) by the second quarter of 2019, giving them free access to primary, secondary, and emergency services; this will possibly be provided through a primary and emergency care fund specifically designed and allocated to cover all costs of regular consults, emergency treatments, and surgeries through RMF’s sponsorship.
- Ensuring that, as the surgical program continues its current recruitment process, it will close this year with a total of at least 30 patients operated on in 2018, and aiming for a 30% increase of this number in 2019.
- Implementing a fully functional Medical Mobile Unit (MMU) and launching our mobile clinic component in partnership with SPEC Institute, with activities in numerous communities where SPEC has already established health clubs. We aim to capitalize on these activities to enact year-long missions in various remote areas of the country.