Back In Haiti 2011
Just wanting to update everyone on our progress. Our plans here right now are rather complicated. To start with, several of the medical teams into the area have cancelled due to the recent political violence and instability. At this time, things appear to be fairly stable. Rumor has it, however, that on Monday the government will be announcing the results of the election. We can almost certainly expect that there will be conflict coincididing with that announcement. We are currently safe staying at gated compound with an armed guard. The second wrench in our plans involves a major decrease in the number of new cholera cases at our originally planned site. There has recently been a sharp decrease from about 150 new cases a day in the Port au Paix and Saint Louis du Nord area to only about 15 new cases a day. It is now manageable for the Haitian staff in the area that have been trained to do the work and the UN has stopped the flights into the area. Truly, this is great news. It not only means that the disease spread in this area has diminished, but it means the education programs that prevent it to begin with are working. However, that being said… the disease continues to pop up and ravage through small towns which are unprepared for the strength in which it hits. One such town is about 2 hours west of Port au Paix. Reports from the area indicate there are large numbers of patients who are symptomatic and further word seems to indicate the hospital in the area might be turning the cholera patients away. What we are currently trying to organize is a mission into the area to 1. Assess the current needs 2. Deliver relevant supplies 3. Put our hands and minds to work in the trenches. That all being said, this is taking quite a bit of logistics, which is what we are working on now. In the meantime, I’m praying for some discernment from the Lord regarding our options. We were at a cholera treatment clinic (CTU) here in PAP at St. Damien’s children’s hospital. Fortunately, the cases here in the capital are diminished for the time being as well, so the wards were not packed, but there were plenty of children hooked up to IV lines getting fluids. The decontamination process is rather interesting as well. Upon entering and exiting the CTU, you must wash your hands with a chlorine solution, walk through a chlorine soaked sponge, and then have the soles of your shoes sprayed with additional chlorine. Really, it’s rather eerie to be honest. Anyhow, I’ll try to keep everyone posted prior to heading out.