Nov 30, 2020

An Update on Covid-19 in Haiti!

Some good news from Haiti--new daily Covid-19 cases have declined significantly since the last time you heard from us. After 9 months of pandemic, Haiti has had less than 10,000 cases and 300 deaths. Due to its very poor health infrastructure, we were expecting much higher numbers since the Dominican Republic (our neighboring country) was reporting an extremely high number of cases towards the beginning of the pandemic. 

 

When the first case was reported in Haiti, there was a lot of stigma associated with Covid-19. People burned health centers because they didn’t want Covid-19 in their area or were physically violent to people showing signs of the virus. This kind of attitude was caused by fear or lack of education about Covid-19. Many people hid their symptoms, afraid of being targeted or isolated by their communities. At C2C, from the beginning of the pandemic, we have educated our patients about the virus. We show informational videos in the waiting room, our registration nurses talk about the signs of the virus and best practices every morning before consultation starts, and our community health team travels to remote areas and talks to the communities about the best practices to reduce the spread of the virus.

 

From the beginning of the pandemic, we have put in place a protocol that outlines the steps to take when we have a patient showing signs and symptoms of Covid-19. Furthermore, we are in direct contact with the Ministry of Health and whenever we suspect a patient might be infected we call them and they schedule a test at the patient's home or in our clinics. Even though we were not sure how the pandemic would affect Haiti, we kept all of our clinics open. We selected an area in each clinic where patients would be isolated if they showed signs or symptoms of Covid-19. We put a handwashing station at the entrance of all our clinics and every patient coming in or leaving must wash their hands. We took the temperature of every individual that entered the clinic. And, all our staff is equipped with PPE even though it currently costs three times the price to buy PPE and hand sanitizers in the country. This was all possible because of YOUR support!

 

At C2C, we remain cautiously optimistic. Second waves in Europe and the US have presented a stark reminder of just how important it is to continue to take this pandemic seriously. While it’s been admittedly difficult to adjust to this “new normal,” we cannot let our guard down and must continue to adhere to virus mitigation best practices. 

 

We are grateful for your generous support which has allowed us to be better prepared to handle a second wave of Covid-19 in Haiti. Thank you so much for all you’ve done to support C2C during this unprecedented year as we continue to provide high-quality primary care in northern Haiti!

Oct 5, 2020

THANK YOU! Program Launching at Bayeux Clinic!

Renovated building where we will offer services
Renovated building where we will offer services

THANK YOU! Because of your generous support, we will begin offering comprehensive maternal health services at our clinic in Bayeux later this month. This would not have been possible without your support!

The last time you heard from us, we did not know how Covid-19 would impact Haiti, especially the impact on the health system. Fortunately, average daily cases have dropped significantly--from over 100 at the time of our last report in July, to now less than 20 new cases per day. Through all of these new challenges, we have prioritized the health and safety of our clinical staff and patients above all else; and we now feel confident in moving forward with bringing C2C’s maternal health services to another clinic this month!

Thanks to your generous support, C2C’s Maternal Health Program will begin at our Bayeux clinic by the end of October. Pregnant women in this community will now have access to all necessary antenatal care services that did not exist prior to C2C. Our maternal health package includes everything women need to have healthy pregnancies and healthy babies: consultation with an OB-GYN, education from a midwife on topics such as nutrition, hygiene, danger signs, and breastfeeding, ultrasounds, lab tests, prenatal vitamins, and any other medications. The midwife will also help women put together a birth plan and educate women on the importance of coming to all of their prenatal appointments.

Bayeux will be C2C’s third clinic to offer comprehensive maternal health services. While we celebrate this accomplishment with supporters like you, we also know that there are so many more women in the communities we serve who lack access to essential maternity care. With the highest maternal mortality rate in the western hemisphere at an estimated 521 deaths for every 100,000 live births, these services are in great need and we will continue this campaign in the hopes of bringing the program to every C2C clinic.

We cannot overstate how grateful we are that you have joined us on GlobalGiving. Thank you for supporting mothers and babies in Haiti!

Jul 31, 2020

C2C continues to respond to Haiti Covid-19 crisis

All patients are instructed to wear masks.
All patients are instructed to wear masks.

The Covid-19 crisis in Haiti is much worse than it was when C2C first launched our campaign on GlobalGiving. As of July 31, 2020, Haiti has confirmed 7,412 cases of Covid-19 and 161 deaths. However, the reality is likely much worse--only two labs in the entire country are able to process Covid-19 tests and experts fear the real number of infections is much greater than what is being reported. In March, the government called for a brief country-wide lockdown, but by May the number of cases began steadily increasing once businesses reopened. A senior official at the WHO recently stated concern for Haiti due to “its unique circumstances, unique fragility and the fact that the disease is accelerating in a highly vulnerable population.”

 

Over the past few months, C2C has continued to work with Haiti’s Ministry of Health every day to support the government’s Covid response, adapting our plans and priorities as the crisis continues to evolve. Just like in the US, public health education has been crucial to preventing the spread of Covid-19 in the communities we serve--but it has not been easy.

 

“For us, the main way to deal with the pandemic in Haiti is prevention,” says C2C’s Chief Operating Officer Dr. Samuel Bernard. At first, our staff found it challenging to convince people to follow best practices for virus mitigation. “People didn’t want to hear about [the virus] because they didn’t trust that it was real,” reflects Dr. Bernard. “Asking patients to wear masks, washing their hands before entering our clinics, was a fight. But, by providing education many times a day in the clinics [and the communities], our patients finally understood that they should follow the protocol to avoid being infected.”

 

Our Covid-19 clinical and community education activities would not be possible without your support. We will continue to respond to Covid-19 in northern Haiti until this crisis is over and we thank you for all you have done for C2C during these difficult times!

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