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AMHE: Florida Chapter News
Opportunity For CME In The US
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Opportunity for Continuing Medical Education (CME) in the US

An international non-profit organization based in Florida, The Society Worldwide Medical Exchange (SWME),  has approached HRDF to help reach out to Haitian Physicians who might benefit from their program  of Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) abroad.

In particular, there are two events next year of value in the United States as followed:

American Diabetes Association (ADA)
72nd Scientific Sessions

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
June 8-12, 2012
www.diabetes.org

Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA)
ID Week 2012

San Diego, California
October 17-21, 2012
www.idweek.org 

Interested Haitian Physicians can request SWME to sponsor them to these major conferences. As explained in the SWME website, the sponsorship covers the entire cost of the doctors’ participation, though they do not incur any collateral expenses. Doctors are selected by the SWME advisory board based on merit and local humanitarian involvement.

When you visit the organization website, you will see that the application process is straightforward

Basic Requirements:
·         Physicians working in a humanitarian capacity, delivering accessible, high quality medical care in underserved, disadvantaged and/or rural communities
·         Limited access to medical activities abroad due to financial hardship
·         Physician must currently practice in the therapeutic area of the conference they wish to attend.


Preferred Qualifications:
·         Applicants working in a public health setting
·         Community leadership
·         Advocacy work

For further questions, please contact:
SHAVALA MAGRI, International Project Manager
1666 Kennedy Causeway, Suite 702
North Bay Village, Florida 33141
Telephone: 1-305-407–9222FAX: 1-305-433-7128
Email: smagri@worldwidemedicalexchange.org
Website: www.worldwidemedicalexchange.org

I encourage you to make the most of this new opportunity. Please, contact me if I can be of assistance.

Sincerely,
Aldy Castor MD, President Haitian Resource Development Foundation (HRDF)

About HDRF:


HAITIAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION: www.hrdf.org
Aldy Castor, M.D., President

United States: 854 Marina Drive, Weston, Florida 33327
Ph 954.659.7953. 954.873.0064, fax 954.659.7957, aldyc@att.net

Haiti: 17, 2ème ruelle Wilson, Pacot, Port-au-Prince, ph 509.3.461.5225 
25, Rue Sténlo Vincent, Aquin

The Haitian Resource Development Foundation (HRDF), a 501 (c ) 3 non-profit organization, with United States Federal Tax I.D. No. 72-1074482, was established in 1987 in the State of Louisiana. This Foundation is also recognized by the government of Haiti as a Non-Governmental Organization (N.G.O.) under the RE: No. MPCEFP/1993/94/17 and registered in the archives of Le Ministère de la Planification et la Coopération Externe under the number B-0167.  HRDF’s mission is to initiate or support projects whose goals are to develop Haiti’s resources and focuses its effort on outcome-based programs in the fields of health care, education, scientific research, arts and culture and economy.

 
Cholera Outbreak in Haiti
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Press Release


Cholera Outbreak In Haiti


October 25, 2010

The Association of Haitian Physicians Abroad (AMHE), South Florida Chapter, remains very concerned about the recent outbreak of cholera in Haiti.


A high-ranking member of the Association has traveled to Haiti for the purpose of making a first-hand assessment of the crisis.  We also have remained in contact with Haitian officials for updates on this crisis as it unfolds.  A major shipment of intra-venous fluids and antibiotics was sent to Haiti earlier this year in June in anticipation of such outbreaks since they are common after disasters like the recent earthquake in Haiti.


We have offered our expertise on the matter to the Haitian authorities and are awaiting further instructions on how we can best participate constructively in the overall response.

We have assembled a group of experts for media outreach and education.


Please contact us at amhe@amhflorida.org for additional information.


AMHE South Florida Chapter

 


AMHE REPORT ON CHOLERA OUTBREAK IN HAITI
Dr J. Pierre-Paul Cadet
1st Vice-President of the Central Executive Committee,
Association of Haitian Physicians Abroad (AMHE)
October 28, 2010

The CHOLERA OUTBREAK involves the Center and Artibonite Departments, which are two of the ten territorial divisions of Haiti. The onset of this unfortunate disease, of unclear origin, that started less than a week ago, requires a swift response.

Early Saturday morning, as the first Vice-President of AMHE, I boarded a plane from Miami to the Capital of Haiti and by mid-day was among the Urgency Team at the Center of Coordination at Bourdon, Port-Au-Prince, headed by Dr Claude Surena. A team of Doctors composed of: Dr Claude Surena, Coordinator and also President of AMH; Dr Ariel Henri, Cabinet Chief of the Ministry of Health; Dr Thierry Roels, from the CDC; Dr Jean-Francois Schemann, Advisor to Minister of Health Alex Larsen from the French Embassy; A Representative from Partners In Health; A Representative from International Red Cross; A Representative from OMS/OPS (WHO); Dr Gerald Lerebours and Dr Jean-Hughes Henrys from Ministry of Health had to work on a Contingency plan to keep the disease confined to the areas already affected and avoid a spreading to elsewhere, mainly the tents cities or camps where a total of more than a million and half people have been displaced after the tragic January 12 earthquake. A strategic plan has been elaborated to meet the challenges, although the biggest ones still remained such as: Rapid transportation of patients from their places to an adequate center to facilitate any support and treatment, also the control of infected products to avoid any contamination.

The strategic plan consists of:
1) Health promotion and prevention
2) Protocols definition and standardized model of care to control the epidemic nature of the disease.
3) Operational organization of services to control the disease.


The health promotion and prevention requires an aggressive Media participation as well churches, community leaders, for a rapid and simple diffusion of the messages mostly based on hygiene, education on the type of foods and cooking methods, drinking and farming water.
The protocols and standardized care involve patients ‘reference, also elimination of mucus and feces, and training of health agents under the partnership with multiple organizations.
The operational organization, being the most complex part of the response, has to deal with the daily load (log) of cases (infected and dead); the sites in Port-Au- Prince and periphery; the identification of capability of existing centers for reference purpose in densely-populated areas; logistics for transportation, including deployment sites; tentative of isolation areas; management of “entrants” and medications; manpower based on the local/regional or departmental needs.

The concept has been reviewed and accepted by all participants of the team and presented at the October 24th briefing to more than 25 concerned and media representatives.
Giving today’s economic hardship and lingering uncertainties, many people are postponing personal plans to visit these affected areas. The AMHE is committed to provide a much needed support by:

A) Establishing a “human resources” system where:
The AMHE Medical relief mission is in “high alert” and members can be quickly deployed
The AMHE will collaborate with the Haitian-American Nurses Association to form a contingency team.
The AMHE will also join as a team with other healthcare volunteers.

B) Providing necessary teaching on:
1) Basic hygiene such as frequent hand-washing with soap, clean clothing, use of
disinfected latrines, use of chlorine-based tablets or similar chemicals to purify usable
water.
2) Oral rehydration salts for early or initial treatment of symptoms.
3) Inspection of rivers as main source of water supply in rural or remote areas.
Decent housing for the needy.
Promoting a massive vaccination campaign against Cholera.
Verification of International Immunization cards for all visitors, especially those from countries with high risks for endemic/epidemic Cholera.
The Cholera has so seen some 2394 patients with 208 dead on October 23, to reach a progressive number of 3,495 and 398 dead on October 26, 2010 creating a panicky situation in all Haitian communities , in the motherland as well as abroad.
It definitely takes a teamwork to counteract the psychological, health and social effects of Cholera. AMHE is ready and up to the task.
Updated information will follow on a regular basis as they become available.

 
Haiti Earthquake Response
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Earthquake Response

After the catastrophic earthquake that hit Haiti on January 12, 2010, where an estimated 300,000 people lost their lives, and more than half a million were injured, members of the Florida Chapter of AMHE sprung into action to provide medical assistance to the earthquake victims.

First Responder

One of our members, Dr Andre Vulcain traveled to Port-au-Prince (PAP), Haiti, on the morning of January 12, on his way to Cap-Haitien, where he heads the only Family Medicine Residency Program in Haiti, with the support of the University of Miami. Dr Vulcain was planning to fly to Cap-Haitien the same day, but because of bad weather conditions in the Northern part of the country, he decided to spend the night in PAP.

He was staying at the Visa Lodge hotel near the airport, when the earthquake hit at 4:53 pm. Fortunately, the hotel sustained only minor damages, and Dr Vulcain was not injured. But all communication lines including telephone, radio, and television were severed. It wasn’t until the next morning that he realized the magnitude of the devastation. He found his way to a hospital in Delmas where he would spend the next four days working sleeplessly, treating patients with crushed injuries, and performing amputations under heroic conditions.

First Flights to Haiti

Forty-eight hours after the disaster, in collaboration with Project Medishare, members of the Florida Chapter, including Dr Marie-Evelyne Moise, Dr Antonia Eysallenne, Dr Rose-Laure Moussignac, traveled to PAP to participate in the medical relief efforts.

On the same day, Dr Alain Innocent, whose wife lost both her parents during the earthquake, also traveled to Haiti with his family, and after making arrangements to bury his in-laws, found his way to the Project Medishare camp near the airport to help treat the injured.

On January 14, Dr Rudolph Moise also traveled to Haiti with a Disaster Rescue Team to search for victims under the rubbles.

Two Critical Care specialists: Dr Reginald Pereira and Dr Arold Augustin traveled to Haiti on January 15 to join the medical relief team at the Medishare camp.

Logistical Challenges

Initially, Project Medishare was using a couple of small aircrafts with limited capacity, to transport medical volunteers and medical supplies to PAP. Priority was given to the trauma surgeons and the employees of the University of Miami and the Jackson Health System. After January 16, our members had very limited access to these flights. We had set up a volunteer list. Hundreds of health care professionals of Haitian descent had signed up to travel to Haiti, but there was no way of getting them there.  Commercial airlines were not flying yet to PAP. Therefore, our members had to find other ways to travel to Haiti.

More Help On The Way

An emergency request was sent out to different government agencies, non-profit organizations, and private donors to assist with transportation to Haiti. Just twenty-four hours later on January 17, a philanthropist provided us with his personal aircraft, and the President of the Chapter was able to travel to Haiti to bring a team of medical volunteers and medical supplies to Haiti.

Many other members traveled to the Dominican Republic, and took an eight-hour drive across the border to come to the assistance of the earthquake victims. In the following days, hundreds of medical professionals of Haitian descent would travel to Haiti from New York, New Jersey, Chicago, Boston, Nebraska, Montreal, with the assistance of the US Military, other NGO’s, and through private charter flights.

Out Of The Media Spotlight

There has been very little coverage in the news media about the contribution of Haitian health care professionals from the diaspora to the medical relief efforts after the earthquake. In the aftermath of the disaster, the media spotlight was focused on foreign medical providers treating the injured, completely ignoring the participation of Haitian providers who sometimes were working side-by-side with their foreign counterparts.

Even less attention has been attributed to the contribution of Haitian providers practicing in Haiti. Many of them perished during the earthquake, others lost family members, their offices were destroyed, dozens of them are homeless. Yet, considering the magnitude of the catastrophe, and the more than a half a million injured who received care, the contribution of the foreign providers pales in comparison to the sacrifice of the local Haitian physicians.

Assistance Not Dependence

Now that the emergency phase of treating the crushed injuries is over, and the focus is shifting toward rehabilitation of the amputees, post-traumatic stress disorder treatment, prevention of epidemics, and long term care of chronic illnesses, we should discourage medical tourism in Haiti, and reinforce or create local structures to allow Haitians to help Haitians.

The outpouring of support from the International Community is immensely appreciated, and Haiti will not rise from its ashes without the assisatnce of the global community, but we need to be careful not to perpetuate the dependence of foreign assistance.

There seems to be very little incentive for foreign NGO’s to work themselves out of a job in Haiti. As the reconstruction funds are being disbursed, specific goals should be established, deadlines should be set for NGO’s to accomplish their missions, and provide outcomes and accountability reports.
 
Commemorative Plaque Awarded to AMHE
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Commemorative Plaque Awarded to AMHE

On March 14th. 2008, the AMHE: Florida Chapter, had the joyous pleasure of receiving this wonderful Commemorative Plaque for its upstanding contribution as a Founding Member of the FIU College of Medicine.

For more information, click on the links below to view the documents regarding the Agreement between AMHE and the FIU College of Medicine:

 

  • FIU Gift Agreement.pdf
  • FIU President Letter.pdf 
  • FIU Dean Letter.pdf 
  • For additional information about the New FIU College of Medicine, visit their website at: http://medicine.fiu.edu/about.html

 

 


Advisory Board

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