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General News
Posted January 23, 2010
Trauma Surgeon Kevin Hirsch Reports from Haiti

Many of us have been greatly moved by the devastation in Haiti and are wondering how we can help on both a personal and organizational level. All Children's so far has provided support in several ways, and we are working with our children's hospital colleagues through the Child Health Corporation of America (CHCA) and the National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions (NACHRI), as well as with Florida officials, on an organized pediatric response. ACH is working with the statewide disaster response system to monitor the arrival of patients into Florida. Patients are expected to arrive in the Tampa Bay area, and it's very likely we'll be called to care for some of these children. Additionally, some of our employees have been called to action in Haiti in an official capacity as part of the military reserves.

On Monday, January 18, ACH sent supplies and medications to Haiti with a team of local medical responders, including St. Petersburg trauma surgeon Dr. Kevin Hirsch. Dr. Hirsch traveled to Jimaní on the Haiti/Dominican Republic border where he delivered the desperately needed supplies and assessed local conditions and needs for further assistance. Here is an excerpt of an email he recently sent to All Children's Hospital CEO Gary Carnes:

Very tragic situation! / Thank you 4 your support
Had 2 Hire helicopter 2 & fro haitian border hosp. Probably 300 patients laying around waiting 2 be treated. Operating rooms w patients in dirty clothes without surgical coverings moved on & off table by a sheet or mattress. Patients have no anesthesia only a little local & some single dose morphine only 4 the procedure itself. They are also deficient in antibiotics & surgically implanted hardware 4 orthopedic fixation. Incredibly disorganized. Everyone trying 2 help. Minimal resources have an xray machine that ran out of film & developer. The need is mostly 4 ortho & wound care. The road from the airport is actually a good 2 hours. Our supplies were sorely needed. Made xlnt contact w controlling doctor if in near future can organize doctor/nurse/supply teams. Actually best was that we are able 2 help stage future teams -h