+ Message from the President
+ Hospital in Haiti Almost Complete with Construction
+ Global Healing in Georgia for World Blood Donor Day
+ Roatán Program in Transition
+ Medical Volunteer Opportunity in Republic of Georgia
+ How You Can Contribute
Message from the President
ABOVE: Luke Ifland with the amazing Lauren Larsen at ABC's 50th Anniversary Banquet
The past winter and spring seasons have been full of much activity in our office, abroad and with our partners. We have been fortunate to develop and expand our partnerships with individuals and organizations who are willing to help us achieve our mission.
As we look on the horizon, there are key programs under development. In Haiti, we are preparing to conduct our first training trip with the new staff at Mirebalais National Teaching Hospital. And in Georgia, several key individuals have already started to be trained in key areas that they will use to build their national blood service. Global Healing is also working with our partners in the United States and Europe to examine new, innovative possibilities at improving healthcare systems in developing countries and collaborating with one another in ever more effective ways.
Global Healing is proud to announce the planned transfer of the Roatán Volunteer Pediatric Clinic to local control. While we have been delighted to see experiences created, expertise shared and lives saved as a result of the Clinic, we are proud to know that Hospital Roatán will be able to continue our activities. Since we began work in 2003, the Clinic has seen over 25,000 children, hosted over 280 physicians and students, and trained 5 Honduran pediatricians. We have done this on a shoestring budget, alongside the local medical community and within their means.
The same process of handover is occurring in Moldova simultaneously. Our national blood safety program with the Ministry of Health of Moldova has contributed to the safe transfusion of more than 100,000 blood units since 2009. We have trained over 150 physicians, medical technologists and nurses. Global Healing has revolutionized the healthcare of a national blood transfusion center, a regional blood transfusion center and three hospitals.
Global Healing Prepares for Work in Haiti
ABOVE: The blood bank at the Mirebalais National Teaching Hospital
In 2011, Global Healing was invited by Partners In Health to develop hospital transfusion services for the Mirebalais National Teaching Hospital. The hospital is nearing completion of construction and will serve as the major referral center for patients throughout Haiti. It will also be the training ground for local medical professionals.
Global Healing has composed a team of blood banking specialists to join us in this rewarding project. Peter Kite (Blood Centers of the Pacific) will be training Haitian medical professionals how to properly and safely fractionate and store blood components; Jean Stanley, MBA, MT(ASCP)SBB, CMQ/OE(ASQ) (Quality-Focus) will be training them on compatibility testing and implementing a quality framework for management and monitoring to enable the transfusion service to comply with international safety standards. The pair has been busy drafting protocols and training documents for our upcoming trip in Fall 2012.
The trainings are only one-half of the puzzle. Global Healing has nearly completed putting together a freight shipment filled with medical supplies and equipment to be shipped to Haiti. All the blood storage equipment was graciously donated by Helmer Inc. and they will also be sending a few engineers to help with the installation and training of staff for maintenance and troubleshooting. The freight will set sail to Haiti in late summer.
In Mirebalais, the city has received much attention with even former President Clinton, United Nations Special Envoy to Haiti, paying a visit to the construction site of the hospital. There has been much support from numerous organizations around the world to help rebuild Haiti. Global Healing is honored to be involved in this project and looks forward to continuing our efforts in working with the local medical community.
Global Healing in Georgia for World Blood Donor Day
ABOVE: The BloodSource team with the Jo Ann Medical Center Blood Bank staff
It has been a busy and active year already for Georgia and its national blood safety reform program. At the beginning of the year, Global Healing and our partner, BloodSource, visited Tbilisi with a team of blood banking specialists. Mitzy Edgecomb, Trish Grace and Dr. Brian Poirier got their first glimpse at current blood practices and regulations in Georgia. Each of them will be responsible for donor recruitment, quality systems and clinical education - all identified focal points for training blood banks throughout Georgia.
A couple months later in March, the Georgians continued their training at the BloodSource headquarters in Mather, California. Drs. Levan Avalishvili, Nina Enukidze and Marina Abashidze from the Jo Ann Medical Center Blood Bank and Lela Kvachantiradze from the National Center for Disease Control of Georgia (NCDC) spent nearly two weeks in the Sacramento region. They continued their training on mobile collections, donor recruitment, quality improvement and clinical education.
In June 2012, Global Healing will be returning to work with the Georgians once again. World Blood Donor Day is quickly approaching and will take place on June 14th. Global Healing and BloodSource are working with the NCDC as they organize a national event that will highlight the country’s need for citizens to step forward and voluntarily donate blood on a regular basis. This will be the first stepping stone to gradually transition Georgia from a paid blood donor system to one based purely on volunteer efforts.
Two specialists from BloodSource will be traveling with us. Vicki Wolfe, a communications manager, will be working closely with the NCDC on media involvement for World Blood Donor Day and also how they can bring blood donations to the spotlight through donor and patient stories. Brie Leon, an account manager, will be working with the Jo Ann Medical Center Blood Bank to help catalyze the growth of their volunteer donor base through increased mobile collection activity and donor recruitment strategies.
As we continue to work with Georgia, we will be focusing primarily on volunteer donor recruitment efforts. The NCDC has identified this as a critical issue to address as a nation. We look forward to our continued work in Georgia. Everyone involved in this project has been amazing to work with and their dedication and efforts have put Georgia on the road to future success!
New Successes, New Directions in Roatán
The Roatán Volunteer Pediatric Clinic (RVPC) physicians continue to see 20-30 clinic patients per day while performing 3-8 additional pre-discharge newborn exams. Dr. Karla Cerritos, the Global Healing pediatrician in the Clinic, is also being called to deliveries when neonatal problems are anticipated. She is involved with resuscitation and subsequent inpatient care of these infants. Premature babies are being treated with continuous positive airway pressure and surfactant when indicated. Consultations regarding pediatric patients in the emergency room are also frequently requested.
Ultrasound became an important diagnostic modality in the Hospital after Global Healing obtained a stationary ultrasound machine in 2007. More advanced and expensive imaging, such as computerized tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are not possible because of difficulties with maintenance and repair in the Roatán environment. In March, Global Healing donated a second ultrasound, which is portable, for use in the emergency department and for prenatal patients. The donation was augmented with ultrasound courses taught by Dr. Stephanie Doniger (emergency medicine) and Dr. David Marinoff (perinatology). Several physicians in the Hospital and the community at large have developed skill in ultrasonography.
Dr. David Marinoff teaches a course in prenatal ultrasound
The Global Healing preventive dental program, designed to combat the rampant tooth decay seen in young Honduran children, has now enrolled over 1,700 children within the target age of 18-months to 5-years. This represents forty percent of the population in this age group on Roatán. The program consists of nutrition education, dental hygiene, distribution of toothbrushes and the application of dental varnish every six months. The preventive care is delivered by immunization nurses when children appear for their vaccinations at one of the four public health immunization clinics on the island.
It is effective because over ninety percent of children in Honduras receive their
immunizations. The Ministry of Health is considering extension of the program to other areas of Honduras. The undertaking on Roatán has developed to the point where the local public health agency is assuming management. Responsibility for obtaining the dental varnish and toothbrushes is to be undertaken by a designated local service group. At a later date, two additional public health measures, the administration of albendazole for deworming and vitamin A, may be added at the time of the immunization visit.
The hospital has taken responsibility for its relationship with Engineering World Health (EWH) which provides biomedical engineering graduates to maintain and repair equipment. Also, it is possible that a Hospital employee will be trained as a biomedical technician through a program sponsored by EWH.
The educational process has been taken over by the Hospital staff. Weekly conferences that were established and presented by Global Healing doctors are now scheduled and delivered by our Honduran colleagues. Clinical decision making and medical education are greatly enhanced by the routine use of UpToDate. The donation of this on-line clinical database was arranged by Global Healing.
Global Healing strives to improve local education and infrastructure, with a goal of self-sufficiency. All of our projects in Roatán have progressed in this direction, with some, as described above, ultimately reaching this goal. We are in discussions with the Ministry of Health to fund an additional local physician in pediatrics (in the role of our current pediatric “fellow”); if successful, then the RVPC, our core program in Roatán, will have essentially reached its goal as well.
ABOVE: Dr. Howard and Alice Gruber (front: left, center) with RVPC staff
In September 2011, Howard Gruber, MD informed Global Healing that he would relinquish his role as Medical Director of the Clinic at the end of March 2012. Likewise, Alice Gruber, RN indicated that she would retire from the position of volunteer coordinator within the same time frame. The Grubers have been involved with the Roatán project for eight years and managed it on-site for the last six years. After affecting the successful transitions mentioned above, the time was right to move on. A steering committee was formed to study how the Roatán program could be managed in the future. Howard and Alice have been active participants in the process. Together with RVPC co-founders and current UCSF faculty Drs. Arup Roy-Burman and Sheila Jenkins, Global Healing is exploring new partnership opportunities. The humanitarian contributions of the Roatán programs have shone brightly for many years. Over this time, Global Healing has become a trusted partner in Roatán’s health care. With such a solid base in the local community, there are now opportunities to not only expand our humanitarian mission across medical specialties, but also develop new academic objectives—in both inter-disciplinary education and public health research.
While transition plans are in evolution, the RVPC is fully operational and continues to seek volunteer attending pediatricians, third year pediatric residents and student interns. Physician applicants should contact Lindsay Lightbody: . Student Intern (HEAL program) candidates may contact Helen Heymann: .
International Medical Volunteer Opportunity in Republic of Georgia
Global Healing is excited to announce opportunities through Tbilisi State Medical University to teach Georgian medical students and physicians on modern medical subjects. Interested board-certified/eligible attendings and/or senior fellows in pediatric medical and surgical subspecialties are invited to volunteer on a fully-funded trip to Tbilisi, Georgia. Volunteers will be expected to lecture and provide hands-on clinical training.
Download the flyer here for more information!
As always, Global Healing appreciates all the support from our donors and our sponsors. The sustainable healthcare programs we have implemented worldwide would not have garnered such great success and development without the generosity from our partnering organizations. As we continue to build upon our accomplishments and provide accessible healthcare to other underdeveloped nations, we greatly appreciate donations in any form.
Please join Global Healing in our mission to provide modern medicine for the developing world. If you would like to find out how you can help Global Healing, by volunteering, making a cash contribution, or otherwise, visit our website: Donate online today!
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