Help for Haiti: Respiratory Care Cares
February 1, 2010
The AARC is keeping close tabs on developments in Haiti and all the ways
the respiratory community can and is helping with the relief efforts.
Here are the first of our reports:
Vendors Step Up to Assist
Respiratory care vendors are going above and beyond to assist
the earthquake victims and we’d like to take this opportunity to acknowledge
their efforts and thank them for providing much needed assistance.
Here’s what our Corporate Partners are doing:
- CareFusion is donating 100 CareFusion ventilators
and 200 infusion pumps, along with 100,000 bottles of silver dihydrogen
citrate, a water purification product that can purify up to 20 million
gallons of water. “We are working now with non-profit agencies to ensure
the products are in position to help as soon as possible in the relief
effort,” said David Schlotterbeck, chairman and CEO. CareFusion’s donation
is valued at approximately $3.1 million.
- Covidien shipped pallets of wound dressings, surgical
kits and gauze, and other items, and is delivering a significant donation
of pain medications through its pharmaceuticals segment. The company
has also partnered with Project HOPE to provide products for
the USNS Comfort hospital ship and is working to meet ongoing needs
for other Covidien products. The company is matching U.S. employee contributions
of $25 or more dollar-for-dollar and is supplementing employee donations
in other regions of the world.
- Dräger has provided 16 Carina-home ventilators at
the request of the University of Miami, where an international effort
to create a 300-bed field hospital at the Port-au-Prince airport has
been underway since shortly after the earthquake hit. Dräger has also
sent two of its respiratory therapists, Frank Caminita, RRT, and Robert
Dutruch, RRT, to support the medical care being delivered at the field
hospital in Port-au-Prince.
- Phillips Healthcare has shipped 29 ventilators to
the country and has provided phone-based inservice education to six
physicians on how to transition a patient from an anesthesia machine
to one of the company’s V60 ventilators. The company is also sending
one of its clinical specialists, Eugene Fordyce, RRT, to Haiti to assist
the critical care physicians and nurses in one large hospital in North
Haiti, and is working to connect respiratory therapists already on the
ground with physicians who have questions about the application of mechanical
Here’s what other respiratory vendors are doing:
- Sepracor has reached out to the American Red Cross
International Fund, responding to a call for financial contributions
to allow the Red Cross to focus on the direct needs of those impacted
by the devastating earthquake. In support of the Red Cross’ relief effort,
Sepracor provided a $75,000 contribution made on behalf of the company’s
- Invacare Corporation is donating more than $105,000
worth of supplies to MedWish International, a Cleveland, OH-based non-profit
organization assisting with relief efforts. “Our thoughts and prayers
go out to those affected by the earthquake in Haiti,” said A. Malachi
Mixon III, chairman and chief executive officer. “In light of this terrible
tragedy, Invacare is working with MedWish to coordinate the donation
of supplies to the relief effort.”
- Kimberly-Clark has committed $1 million over five
years to the American Red Cross’ Annual Disaster Giving Program, and
a portion of the gift is designated for the International Disaster Fund,
which helps Red Cross organizations outside the U.S. when disasters
of this magnitude strike. The company has also donated 20 pallets of
medical supplies valued at $125,000, along with other products valued
at $50,000, and is matching dollar-for-dollar all employee donations
worldwide to the American Red Cross up to $300,000.
- AMN Healthcare launched the AMN Cares Haiti Relief
Program to provide a way for its employees to make a financial contribution
to a charity of their choice via a payroll deduction. Steve Wehn, AMN’s
senior vice president in charge of the program, said in a message to
the team, “Many of you have shared with me personal stories of your
direct family, clients, and health care providers that have a connection
to Haiti, and the staggering devastation and suffering that is occurring.
It once again supports how closely connected we are as a community.”
- Westmed, Inc., is collecting cash contributions from
its employees for donation to the American Red Cross and has committed
to supplying various medical products to the CitiHope International
Organization, which will provide immediate relief and long term support.
In addition, various related medical products will be provided through
the company’s Caribbean distribution partner, Puerto Rico Hospital Supply.
Medical Technologies Inc. has donated
10 Easyone™ Spirometers and boxes of supplies to Medicines for Humanity
™ for distribution in Haiti . The company is also providing education
on the devices and plans to continue to offer support to the clinics
and hospitals that receive the donation to help in the diagnosis and
treatment of their patients with respiratory diseases.
- SeQual Technologies has donated 10 of their Eclipse portable oxygen
concentrators and other oxygen equipment to the relief effort. The $50,000
donation is being made in conjunction with Operation USA and Partners in
Health. “Through our past experience of providing the Eclipse in emergency
and disaster situations, we have a clear understanding of how helpful this
small device can be,” notes Ron Richard, CEO of SeQual Technologies. “We
are humbled to play even a small role in the Haiti relief.”
HHS Launches Web Site for Haiti Volunteers
A new web
site set up by the Department of Health and Human Services
is providing much needed information to health care professionals who
would like to volunteer to assist the earthquake victims.
The site notes volunteer opportunities in disaster settings such as the
one in Haiti are rare, but invites professionals to e-mail their name,
clinical area, specialty skills, degrees, and language capabilities (Haitian
Creole or French speakers are especially in need). HHS will then log the
information and share it with the United States Agency for International
Development, the lead agency handling the U.S. response.
The web site also encourages health professionals to participate in the
Emergency System for Advance Registration of Volunteer Health Professionals
(ESAR-VHP) and the Medical Reserve Corps, two ongoing programs that pre-approve
medical professionals for service in the event of a disaster situation
here or abroad.
Media Notes Participation of AARC Members
Four AARC members have recently been featured in media reports
on medical missions to Haiti:
- Bob Stafford in this
article on the NBC affiliate web site out of Burlington,
VT. Bob traveled to Haiti with a team from Fletcher Allen Health Care
in Colchester, VT.
- Jean Dorce in this
article in the Press of Atlantic City. Jean is
a member of a team from Shore Memorial Hospital in Atlantic City, NJ.
- Sr. Airman Brooke Lohr in three recent articles:
one in the Cincinnati, OH, Enquirer, this
one in the Dayton, OH, Daily News, and this
one in the Air Force Material Command that pictures
her shaking hands with President Barack Obama. Both the president and
vice president were on hand to greet Lohr and other members of her Critical
Care Air Transport Team at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida. Brooke
and her team have made four trips into the country to help evacuate
- HM2 Carrie Hansen in this
article in the Jax Air News. Carrie was part of
a rapid response team from the Naval Hospital in Jacksonville, FL, that
went to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to care for victims who were being transported
out of Haiti shortly after the earthquake struck.
How You Can Help
Consider making a financial donation to the Red
Cross or another reputable organization assisting with the
relief efforts. Other organizations may be found on the InterAction