Direct Relief staff members Brett Williams and Nate Brock are in Haiti coordinating logistics and relief efforts there. Williams’ comments from Port-au-Prince follow:
We have been able to organize the piles of medical supplies for the tent hospital that has been established in two large tents at the UN compound, where dozens of volunteer physicians from the States and several from France are working nonstop. Staff from the University of Miami, and a team from New Jersey were among the many who had been at it for days – sleeping onsite on crates.
Sunday evening, patients with serious injuries, including open compound fractures, were still arriving to be seen for the first time.
As we work to organize the resources already here, we are receiving site level assessments and reports from our partner health facilities – all of them are draining supplies fast and need replenishment. The in-country logistics for distribution, essentially from the airport outward, are pinched. We are focusing on the medical-supply channels, but food, water, fuel, patient transport, and every other type of transport and distribution function also is urgent.
Former President Clinton is here today, and we were with him at the hospital in Port-au-Prince. We have connected with Partners in Health and will work together to assist St. Damien Children’s Hospital. The pre-positioned emergency medical supplies we provided to St. Damien months ago in anticipation of an emergency (which we thought would be a hurricane), was a good call. But they need more, as do other partners, just to keep up.