Monday, October 27, 2008

This is Good News

Haitian Hearts has another patient accepted...Heureuse!!

More to follow....

Saturday, October 18, 2008

This is Bad News

October 15, 2008

Poor to suffer meltdown as well

Associated Press

GENEVA -- The world's poorest people will be hungrier, sicker and have fewer jobs as a result of the global financial crisis, and cash-strapped aid agencies will be less able to help, aid groups are warning.

The charities that provide food, medicine and other relief on the ground say cutbacks have already started, but it will take months or more before the full impact is felt in the poorest countries of Africa, Latin America and Asia.

During global recessions in the 1970s and 1990s, aid spending dropped sharply and took years to recover, said Matt Grainger of the British-based charity Oxfam International.

Aid agencies face more than just the prospect of plummeting donations. Higher food prices and more joblessness are greatly increasing the number of people who need assistance.

Philippe Guiton of World Vision told the Associated Press that his agency plans to cut back hiring, which will have implications for delivering aid to the needy.

"What we are going to do now is to issue an order to reduce spending, to delay recruitment, delay purchases of capital assets, etc., until we can see clearer how much our income has dropped," he said.

Robert Glasser, secretary-general of CARE International, said the agency has "a number of major donors who have invested heavily in the markets and have now seen their portfolios take a big hit."

What that will mean on the ground could take months to gauge and perhaps years for a complete recovery, aid groups said.

In impoverished Haiti, funding for projects to rebuild from tropical storms that killed nearly 800 people and destroyed more than half the nation's agriculture hangs in the balance.

"It's too soon to tell yet because we haven't heard back positively or negatively from our major donors," Greg Elder, deputy head of programming for U.S-based Catholic Relief Services, said by telephone from the battered port of Les Cayes.

The group is waiting for word from the U.S. Agency for International Development on whether it will get $2 million for 10 new food-for-work projects, which provide Haitians with rations in exchange for building roads, irrigation systems and environmental projects.

That means problems across the board, said CARE's Glasser. Wealthy countries will stop investing in developing countries, and cut back on imports from poorer countries, leaving their governments with less money to pay for health care and schools, he said.

In Zimbabwe, a Red Cross food program for 260,000 orphans and HIV-infected people began last month to make sure AIDS victims have sufficient nourishment in a nation where millions are going hungry because of drought and land-seizures that have devastated agriculture.

HIV-infected people are especially vulnerable because without food they cannot tolerate their medicine.

"The farmers' food stores are depleted. There is no food available," said Peter Lundberg, country representative of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

"I spoke to a family a few days ago and I said, 'How are you coping?' Basically this was a poor farmer family. And they said, 'We used to have three, maybe four, meals a day and now we're down to one meal.'"

Medecins Sans Frontieres, which runs AIDS clinics in the Cape Town township of Khayelitsha in South Africa, said it's "far too early" to determine the impact the crisis would have on donations.

"The money we're spending now was collected some time ago," said Henrik Glette, a South Africa-based spokesman for the group.

But Neil Tobin, an employee of UNAIDS in Sierra Leone, warned: "It is well documented that AIDS is a problem compounded by poverty. Thus the concern is that any sharp economic downturn may present increased challenges, particularly for developing nations in responding to the epidemic."

Top scientists meeting in Cape Town, South Africa, said they feared the financial turmoil would curb research into a new AIDS vaccine.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said "the increases in the budget we had hoped for will not be forthcoming."

Alan Bernstein, head of Global Vaccine Enterprise, said the financial meltdown is "not good news for research in general and vaccine research in particular."

Associated Press writers Jonathan M. Katz in Port-au-Prince, Haiti; Michelle Faul and Donna Bryson in Johannesburg, South Africa, and Clare Nullis in Cape Town, South Africa contributed to this report.


Friday, October 17, 2008

Haitian Hearts Has Another Patient Accepted

Today was a great day.

Miterlande is a 16 year old girl who lives near Port-au-Prince.

We examined her for the first time two years ago. She has severe mitral valve regurgitation and stenosis. This valve was destroyed because of rheumatic fever.

Miterlande was accepted today into an excellent medical center in the United States with a great cardiovascular team. She will have heart surgery soon!

Work on her visa has already started.

(For the three of you who faithfully read this blog, Heureuse still patiently waits in Carrefour.)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Haitian Deportations...Catholic Bishops Say "No"

Posted on Wed, Oct. 15, 2008

U.S. bishops call for halt in Haitian deportations

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, citing humanitarian reasons, has joined the growing call for the Bush administration to designate Temporary Protected Status for undocumented Haitians living in the United States.

The TPS status -- set aside for countries suffering from political tumult and natural disasters -- would allow undocumented Haitians to reside legally in the United States and obtain work permits.

In an Oct. 8 letter to President Bush, Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, argued that Haiti qualifies for TPS because of the recent devastation of consecutive storms and an earlier food crisis.

The letter, made public Tuesday, calls for TPS for an 18-month period and also noted that conditions in Haiti are comparable to or worse than those in countries that recently received an extension of TPS, such as El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua.


© 2008 Miami Herald Media Company. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

New York Times Editorial

October 13, 2008

New York Times Editorial

Help for Haiti

This year has been especially cruel to Haiti, with four back-to-back storms that killed hundreds of people, uprooted tens of thousands more and obliterated houses, roads and crops. A far richer country would have been left reeling; Haiti is as poor as poor gets in this half of the globe. Those who have seen the damage say it is hard to convey the new depths of misery there.

The Bush administration promised Haiti $10 million in emergency aid and Congress has since authorized $100 million for relief and reconstruction. The United Nations has issued a global appeal for another $100 million. We have no doubt that Haiti will need much more.

There is something the United States can do immediately to help Haitians help themselves. It is to grant “temporary protected status” to undocumented Haitians in the United States, so they can live and work legally as their country struggles back from its latest catastrophe.

This is the same protection that has been given for years, in 18-month increments, to tens of thousands of Nicaraguans, Hondurans, Salvadorans and others whose countries have been afflicted by war, earthquakes and hurricanes.

While the Bush administration has temporarily stopped deporting Haitians since Hurricane Ike last month, it has not been willing to go the next step of officially granting temporary protected status to the undocumented Haitians living here.

Haiti’s president, René Préval, and members of Congress have urged the administration to change its mind. We urge the same.

There is very little that is consistent in the United States’ immigration policies toward its nearest neighbors, except that the rawest deal usually goes to the Haitians. Cubans who make it to dry land here are allowed to stay; those intercepted at sea are not. Hondurans and Nicaraguans who fled Hurricane Mitch 10 years ago have seen their temporary protected status renewed, as have Salvadorans uprooted by earthquakes in 2001.

Haiti, meanwhile, more than meets the conditions that immigration law requires for its citizens here to receive temporary protected status, including ongoing armed conflict and a dire natural or environmental disaster that leaves a country unable to handle the safe return of its migrants.

If Haiti is ever going to find the road to recovery after decades of dictatorship, upheaval and decay, it will take more than post-hurricane shipments of food and water. Haiti desperately needs money, trade, investment and infrastructure repairs.

It also needs the support of Haitians in the United States, who send home more than $1 billion a year. What it does not need, especially right now, is a forced influx of homeless, jobless deportees.

Monday, October 13, 2008

ER Crowding Still a Hot Topic

The day after I wrote OSF's Administation about Emergency Room overcrowding in our Emergency Room in Peoria, I was put on probation for six months.

Here is my letter that eventually got me fired.

That was September, 2001.

ER overcrowding is still a big issue in the Emergency Medicine literature.

Emergency Medicine News has this online article this month. It was written by Dr. Peter Viccellio.

He said that patients should not be boarded (held in hallways) in the ER. They should be admitted. In the ER at OSF we were holding patients for hours in the hallways. And patients in ER rooms and hallways were not getting admitted in an appropriate time fashion in my opinion.

Dr. Viccellio writes that ER overcrowding is a systemic hospital problem. And that is I why I wrote Keith Steffen and many others because this problem could not be solved only at the ER level.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Heureuse Means Happy

This following is an online chat I had with Dejean (Frandy) today regarding Heureuse. Heureuse is the 29 year old Haitian gal that needs heart surgery....Dejean is our 19 year old Haitian young man who helps Haitian Hearts on the ground in PAP when we are not there...please pray we find a medical center for Heureuse very soon.

She was operated at OSF in Peoria in 2002, but OSF will not allow her to return for repeat heart surgery.

From: Dejean Frandy
Date: Sat, Oct 11, 2008 at 1:09 PM
Subject: Chat with Dejean Frandy

12:55 PM me: frandy are you there?
Dejean: yes
how are you doing?
me: talk to me...
12:56 PM Dejean: ok
She's not doing ok for now
she can't breath well
12:57 PM and she's losing weigh seriously
she looks very thin
me: is she taking her medication?
Dejean: her heart is beating so quick
12:58 PM she's taking the same piles
12:59 PM me: ok
Dejean: but they don't do nothing to reduce the pain
1:00 PM she cried when i saw her
me: why did she cry?
where is her pain?
1:01 PM Dejean: because she's surffering
she can't hold her stomac
me: is she able to walk outside her house?
Dejean: when her heart beats
1:02 PM yes
but she's pretty afraid of her health condition
1:03 PM me: tell her to decrease her furosemide to twice each day...not three times each day...she needs to eat bananas also
Dejean: i asked her to save her money food
1:04 PM i don't let her call me
1:05 PM me: frandy, let her call you once each day...
tell her we are working hard to find her a hosptial...are her kids gone?
1:06 PM Dejean: so i am doing my best to visit her everyday
they are gone ok
me: thanks
Dejean: they are in her country side
me: can you take her to dr pilie this week?
is there anyone that can stay with her if she is admitted to the general hospital??
Dejean: ok i will
1:07 PM me: tell her not to give up and to kenbe fem...
Dejean: she wants to do that for now
she just needs your word
me: wants to do what?
1:08 PM Dejean: she wants to be hospitalized over there
me: tell her maria and i have not forgotten her...i sent her medication this will go to gertrude
Dejean: ok
1:09 PM me: tell her not to take enalapril for two days to see if she feels better...
Dejean: ok
i got you
me: see you later, friend...
1:10 PM Dejean: ok
me: also, you are going to get your computer this week from dr ebel...
Dejean: yes he told me that
1:11 PM me: au revoir...
Dejean: you know what? they are very good
me: yes they are...
Dejean: tell them i said "merci beaucoup"
me: dako..
Dejean: they really want to take me out of poverty
1:12 PM with only one thing
i like it
me: dako...
Dejean: thank you very much
thank you
me: du rien...
Dejean: let me write him back
me: dako...

Monday, October 6, 2008

Two Years Later, Angel Gets a Chance

Almost two years ago Haitian Hearts examined a 5 year old girl named Angel. Her exam and echocardiogram revealed congenital heart disease.

We did admit her to a Haitian children's hospital for pneumonia in November, 2006 and she reovered nicely.

We documented Angel's plight on this post.

Guess what?

Angel is having heart surgery TODAY in the States. There is a God.

Stanley, the other child described in the post, has been "lost to follow up".

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Look How Joliet's EMS Works

Click on this link to see how the Joliet Fire Department works for Joliet.

Joliet has Paramedics in every station. Peoria has only been "cleared" to have two stations function as Paramedic.


The Joliet Fire Department has 9 ambulances for Paramedic care. The Peoria Fire Department doesn't even own an ambulance.


And all firefighters in Joliet must be Paramedics. Sounds like the Joliet Fire Department is supported by the city and Provena Saint Joseph Medical Center.

Quite a bit different than Peoria.