Hadassah Hospital Doctors and Nurses Help Relief Efforts in Haiti

19Jan10

The following is what Ron Krumer, Director of External Relations at Hadassah Medical Organization in Jerusalem heard from Dr. Taras Shirov, one of Hadassah physicians in Haiti:

They arrived 3 days ago and built the field hospital from scratch in a soccer stadium. Until this morning they did not have any local infrastructure such as running water or washrooms. They worked for 36 hours non-stop, operating on more than 70 people (not counting endless small treatments and procedures they do not have records for). As of this morning they can have showers under running water instead of using 3 large bottles per person for shower.

The numbers of injured and sick people are overwhelming and it seems as if no change is around the corner. American physicians and nurses help in the Israeli hospital, and an American nurse who has been living in Haiti for years serves as a translator because language differences is a major problem. Imagine a situation where a physician or a nurse tries to take vital signs from patients and cannot communicate with them.

Dr. Shirov is an anesthesiologist and an orthopedic surgeon. He works there as both – running back and forth between the anesthesia machines and the operating table. Most of the ER work is done at night while operations are performed during the day. The weather has been favorable so far although it’s very hot (80’s during the day) and humid (80%). The only air conditioner is in the operating room, and they used regular ventilators.

The following story reflects a unique Hadassah contribution to the overall Israeli effort. They ran out of screws for external reinforcement structures for limb fractures. This screws are screwed into the bone. Reuven Gelfond, the OR nurse from Mt. Scopus found a local factory where he had them create screws out of regular bald nails.

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One Response to “Hadassah Hospital Doctors and Nurses Help Relief Efforts in Haiti”

  1. 1 Hadassah Topp

    Hi! i have the same name as the Hospital! i live in New Zealand.
    well i have to go now.
    cya.
    from hadassah Topp


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