In September of 2011, EMPACT Northwest graduated Haiti’s first US standard Emergency Medical Technician Basic level providers. In 2012, EMAPCT and other organizations dedicated to Haitian comprehensive Emergency Medical Services formed a working consortium Rezo Medikal Ayisyen (R.M.A.).
April 2012, EMPACT NW organized and is hosting the second EMT class at the EMAPACT Haiti House. The focus of this course is utilization of current Haitian EMT’s from the previous EMPACT/PAPMO course, as well as EMT’s from the Haitian Organization Gwoup Ayisyen pou Ijans (G.A.I.). GAI is an all Haitian organization established following the 2010 Earthquake. GAI continues to receive support from the EMS community of New York State, including FDNY EMS via the Banshee/Alliance01 Organization.
The goal of the EMPACT NW/PAPMO program is not only to educate additional EMT’s for the city of Port Au Prince, but also to promote and educate Haitian EMT instructors. As the Haitian EMS capacity grows, the need for experienced and educated EMS providers will also grow. All R.M.A. consortium members are committed to producing an effective, sustainable all-Haitian EMS system. Education is the first step.
R.M.A. Consortium is currently working with the above partnerships and in collaboration with the Haitian Ministry of Health (MSPP), Haitian National Police, various city hospitals, and seeking partnerships with the newly established 116 Haitian Ambulance communication center.
Below are "notes from the field" as this year’s first EMT course progresses.
April 5, 2012
Hello project partners! I am happy to report that our school is going very well. The students are all active and eager learners. We have most of our logistical issues figured out. The students have completed Week 1, in which they learned about:
Being an EMT Performing a patient exam and assessing vital signs Anatomy & Physiology Shock Moving and lifting patients
They have been learning many practical skills as well as medical knowledge. On Wednesday they spent time at various clinics and hospital locations - JP1, JP2, and Medishare - to practice their patient exam and vital signs assessment skills. Those clinical visits were all productive and successful as well. Tomorrow I leave the country but I will still be overseeing the course. I was sorry to leave the students, as they have been fantastic, but I am planning to return for graduation. Thanks again for your participation. I think this is a great class. These students and your organizations will really benefit from this training. Eric Adman,
EMT Program Division Manager
April 10, 2012
Friends, Hello all from Port Au Prince. We all owe Eric Adman very loud round of applause for laying down such a strong base. The 29 students are wonderful and attentive, as well as highly skilled in particular areas that are a pre-requisite for aspiring EMTs. Before Eric left he and the Haiti EMPACT staff turned over an ever evolving and highly functional EMS program that most importantly is being taught 85% in French and Creole. Haitian EMT Instructors Gerard Prevot, Pierre Duckens, and Claudel Gedeon are dynamic and each day translate more EMT power points into French prior to class. Our roles as American instructors are largely to back up our Haitian counterparts, supply a body of medical experience from the field, and supervise practical skill drilling. This modality allows them to gain great experience and allows us to provide supplemental data while largely letting them teach. A very important aspect for us remember is that most of the 29 students have been exposed to many BLS principles as CFR instructors, medical transporters-interpreters, oxygen techs as well as volunteer fire fighters.
RN Dave York and EMT Walter Adler have been thoroughly briefed by EMT-P Eric Adman prior to turn over, although administrative duties are both intuitive and limited. Not only do EMPACT Haiti organizers have the compound running smoothly, but the overall the training blue print for this deployment is both flexible to change and accommodating to local conditions, IE Haitian unprediablities. Which speaks volumes to backend planning carried out by EMPACT Northwest and other allies.
Classes being at roughly 0900 each day and run to 1700 with a one hour lunch break, and liberal use of ten to fifteen minute breaks. Food is delicious. Transport as Eric Adman has identified is logistically difficult, as has been said public tap tap and moto based transport is unpredictable, road conditions due to the rains (and neglect) are poor. Many students do in fact travel 2 ½ hours and it is unclear what we can due to aid this situation except lobbying agencies to give more complete transports or subsidize a larger percentage or the ride, however no students are excessively late and they are Haitians so they are of course very tough and adaptive. Today we had a visit from William Black and a small delegation from St. John’s Ambulance running the FAITH imitative to train 6,000 Haitian police as CFRs. So far they have trained 2,000. Mr. Black and his delegates seemed very impressed with the class and pledged to supply us with CFR Mannequins and first aid kits to each student. We have begun patient assessment medical and trauma with built in practical’s. Tomorrow they go on clinical and can get a chance to try out their new assessment skills. We will keep you all updated. -- Group02 Staff: EMT Walter Adler Delegate Banshee Association
Eric , I am now on leave in North Carolina till April 29 and before I left Haiti, I stop by to visit the EMT class that was being taught by Walter Adler. I was impressed by the professionalism of Walter and the whole class. You could tell that the students were really into the course and wanting to learn. My HNP students have only good comments about the training and the SJA-HNP FAITH Program donated 10 adult manikins and 35 student 1st aid training packs to the class. Keep up the great work and again thank EMPACT and the Instructors for the support of an EMT/EMS in HAITI. Best Regards, William Black
SJA-FAITH Program Manager
St John Ambulance Canada
April 14, 2012
Friends, “So it seemed like a short but highly productive deployment. Yesterday afternoon we finished the cardiology lecture section taught by Instructor Gideon and administered a 43 question written exam on PT assessment and airway. The first rather obvious thing about this test was that it was not multiple choice (like those given to GAI and American EMS), the second was that it was graded with a liberal curve, assigning up to 7 extra points for punctual and flawless attendance, outstanding clinicals, and "non-collaborative test taking".”
“It was pleasure to work with EMT Instructors Gerard, Pierre, Claudel, and Dave York. I wish the deployment had been longer. I think the EMPACT Haiti staff are great to work with, and the students will make great EMTs. Increasingly I feel that our two years of efforts for EMS in Haiti are beginning to bear serious fruit.” “If we remain united, if we remain systematic, organized and ever attentive to the leadership of the Haitian people; then I do believe that the efforts of the RMA Alliance will result in a modern EMS system in the nation of Haiti, controlled and operated by the Haitian people.” “Brothers and sisters, pray for the safety of the incoming crews and our brave students. Wish us luck, and from East Coat to West Coat, shore to shore, lets keep on grinding towards victory. EMS as a reality in Haiti.”
EMT Walter Adler Delegate Banshee Association
In January 2012, EMPACT NW members traveled to Haiti to start the process of forming Haiti's first comprehensive medical emergency and pre hospital care and transport system.
This project named Port Au Prince Medic One (PAPMO) is run by EMPACT Northwest and its dedicated group of volunteers from the Pacific Northwest USA. PAPMO graduated Haiti's first class of EMT's in September of 2011.
On January 26th, EMPACT/PAPMO administrative members were joined by many other organizations with the common goals of effective emergency medical services in Haiti. EMPACT hosted a one day mini conference with the goals of forming a working consortium among the many organizations. These organizations are:
EMPACT Northwest, Project Medishare, AIMER Haiti, NOAH NY, Global DIRT, JP HRO, Haitian National Police, St John Canada, Adventist Hospital Haiti, GAI, Project Hope, Lend a Hand and Foot, Banshee Organization (FDNY EMS), Village Health, and Haiti Hospital Appeal.
After brief introductions, we are proud to announce that all members agreed to form a consortium (Ayisyen Rezo Medikal, Haitian Medical Group). We identified how to leverage our common goals while empowering individual expertise. We were quickly able to form working committees and set short and long term goals. A recent triumph was the submission of our project goal to President Martelly, by personal meeting with our consortium spokesperson Dr Enrique Ginsburg of Project Medishare. The involved organizations have taken on various tasks from political representation, working with the minister of health, to operational, educational and financial obligations.
EMPACT NW, has committed to continued efforts in the education of EMT's in Haiti. We will hold two more classes this year. Our consortium partners have agreed to sponsor students and employ them upon successful graduation. EMPACT NW has committed to assisting these consortium organizations with staffing support by payroll assistance and back-filling vacancies. GAI (Gwoup Aysiyen Pou Ijans) is a group of Haitians who also recently graduated from an EMT course administered by a consortium member Banshee Organization. GAI is an all-Haitian group of emergency responders who will play a decisive role in the future of Haitian EMS. EMPACT will be assisting GAI by clinical placement, temporary staffing arrangements and by including their EMTs in our EMT Master Instructor program. EMPACT will also be working with GAI and AIMER Haiti to develop a community empowerment course designed to train basic first aid to communities.
EMPACT program managers determined that the best utilization of PAPMO funding would be to leverage "people power". Starting a nation's emergency services program with ten thousand dollars and volunteer labor may seem like an impossibility. However, EMPACT has founded itself in the belief of people power. Our strategy is to multiply our staffing and financial capacity by leadership organization, strategic advisory work and belief in the people on the ground. For example, sending thirty instructors from the Seattle area to teach a single EMT class can have costs nearing sixty thousand dollars including airfare, lodging etc. But EMPACT can certainly send ten instructors...Banshee can send ten more. AIMER Haiti will provide class space, Medishare and Adventist will provide clinical rotations, etc. We will need more funds to continue this project for sure, but not before we stretch ten thousand dollars into one-hundred thousand dollars worth of accomplishments!
Next month, our education team members will travel to NYC to meet with multiple partner organizations. Dr Henry Paul of NOAH NY will be hosting our fall EMT class in Cap Haitian. We will work out details and also stop by the Banshee group to recruit EMT instructors from FDNY EMS. A special thanks to the many volunteers who continue to head up working committees. It takes many volunteer hours to have this level of success. Also, a huge thank you to our donors. Your donations allow our volunteers to work. You donations allow our volunteers to get to the places in need of our services. The donors to this program are literally financing the first emergency service program in this nations history. This is history in the making and YOU have made it possible.
For the people of Haiti.
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