Partners In Health (PIH)

Our mission is to provide a preferential option for the poor in health care. By establishing long-term relationships with sister organizations based in settings of poverty, Partners In Health strives to achieve two overarching goals: to bring the benefits of modern medical science to those most in need of them and to serve as an antidote to despair. We draw on the resources of the world's leading medical and academic institutions and on the lived experience of the world's poorest and sickest communities. At its root, our mission is both medical and moral. It is based on solidarity, rather than charity alone. When our patients are ill and have no access to care, our team of health ...
May 19, 2016

PIH Cholera Response in Haiti - May 2016 Update

Thank you for supporting Partners In Health/Zanmi Lasante and our efforts to end the continuing cholera outbreak in Haiti.

Nearly six years after arriving in Haiti, cholera is still sickening and killing thousands of Haitians. According to recent government figures, over 770,000 Haitians - 7% of the country's population - have suffered from cholera. 9,200 have died. So far in 2016, more than 6,000 have fallen ill, and on average 37 people are dying per month.

Cholera occurs so regularly in Haiti that World Health Organization officials now consider it endemic to the country. Many researchers point out that the cholera bacterium has likely become established in the country's rivers, estuaries and coastal waters, making the illness that much harder to eradicate. Not to mention the fact that only 24% of the population has access to toilets, meaning that adequate sanitation and safe water - keys to beating cholera - are unavailable to the vast majority of Haitians.

Dwindling international support for cholera eradication compounds these issues. In 2010, when cholera first hit Haiti, over 200 international organizations were offering financial and policy assistance. Fewer than 12 of these organizations are still providing these resources, which has slowed relief efforts and helped allow cholera to rage on.

PIH's senior health and policy advisor, Dr. Louise Ivers, commented, "We need to raise our expectations of what's possible to do in Haiti and other countries in terms of these diseases that we've completely eliminated from our own societies."

PIH/ZL continues to fight cholera through treatment and prevention. Our staff of local community health workers accompany cholera patients to treatment at PIH clinics; open rehydtration posts in remote locations; educate communities about santitation; and work to establish adquate sanitation and water systems.

Your support makes this lifesaving work possible, and along the way helps redefine what's possible in global health. From all of us at PIH, thank you!

Links:

Mar 16, 2016

PIH Ebola Response March 2016 Update

Rebecca E. Rollins / Partners In Health
Rebecca E. Rollins / Partners In Health

Above: PIH clinicians receive patients at the Maforki Ebola Treatment Unit in Port Loko, Sierra Leone.

 

Your support of Partners In Health in the midst of the Ebola crisis allowed us to effectively treat patients and halt the spread of the virus in Sierra Leone and Liberia. Now, your continued support helps us rebuild these countries' health systems, which were decimated by Ebola.

New research about Ebola is helping to guide our efforts to bolster West Africa's health systems. Dr. Paul Farmer, PIH co-founder and chief strategist, leads this research, and comments, "To understand this Ebola pandemic, or any other transnational outbreak for that matter, we have to resist the urge for simplicity. Thta means going beyond the perfunctory epxlanations afforded by individual disciplines and, importantly, listening to the stories of those most affected. You can't build a health care system without a faithful effort to appreciate the historical, economic and social context where the work needs to be done."

Harvard Medical School recently published an article that further details Dr. Farmer's research and how it is "illuminating the hidden causes of the Ebola outbreak." You can read the full article by clicking this link.

Though the Ebola outbreak has subsided, there is still so much work to be done. Thank you for making it possible.

Links:

Mar 10, 2016

University Hospital in Haiti March 2016 Update

Photo by Rebecca E. Rollins/Partners In Health
Photo by Rebecca E. Rollins/Partners In Health

Above: Oncology nurses Yolande Nazaire (from left) and Vierzela Pierre care for patients undergoing chemotherapy at University Hospital.

Thank you for supporting Partners In Health and University Hospital in Mirebalais, Haiti.

University Hospital is dramatically widening access to oncology services in Haiti as the country's only facility to provide comprehensive cancer care, free of charge. According to Dr. Ruth Damuse, oncology program director for Partners In Health and Haitian sister organization Zanmi Lasante, before University Hospital and its oncology services, "people in rural Haiti didn't have any chance to have access to cancer care. A few patients would try to get the services in the capital, Port-au-Prince, but the cost would be so high, they would start a treatment and stop in the middle of the process."

Now, each day an average of 22 patients visit University Hospital's oncology department, where they can be diagnosed through biopsies, CT scans, and the expertise of doctors at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women's Hospital; treated with chemotherapy and surgery; and supported with palliative care and psychosocial services.

Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers treated at University Hospital -- of the 1,600 biopsies the oncology department performed in 2015, nearly 40 percent were breast-related. At the below links, you can learn about the path of a breast cancer patient at University Hospital and hear more from Dr. Damuse about the evolution of cancer care in Haiti.

Thank you again for your generous support - it truly is what makes this work possible.

Links:

 
   

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