Chris - patient at the paediatric unit
We are delighted to announce that the target for the emergency appeal we launched last year to save the maternity and paediatric units from closing has been reached! This means that thousands of children and hundreds of birthing mothers in Haiti will receive the life-saving health care they need this year. Thank you so much to all of you who donated so generously to this urgent appeal! One of the children you are supporting is Chris...
Chris was a patient at the paediatric unit in February of this year. He was born with the genetic disorder sickle cell anaemia, which means that his body produces abnormally shaped red blood cells which can block blood flow and cause organ damage as well as extreme pain.
At only five years old, Chris is a frequent visitor to HCBH, having been attending regularly for treatment since its paediatric service opened in 2012. Every time his body gets stressed, he suffers from a sickle cell crisis, which can be very painful and potentially life-threatening. He is usually admitted for a couple of days, but this past occasion he ended up staying for a total of five, after receiving two blood transfusions and painkillers.
Chris is a feisty little boy despite his circumstances and chatters away with the nurses as they do their rounds; they are quite familiar to him because of his frequent stays at the hospital. When asked who his favourite person at the hospital is, he thinks about it and then says “Dr Toussaint”, the hospital’s chief medical director and practising paediatrician. Why? “Because he’s friendly and doesn’t stick needles in me, like everyone else!” he continues with a cheeky grin.
Thanks to the paediatric unit at the hospital, Chris’ family know where to come so that he is able to receive reliable care from truly outstanding medical professionals who not only provide treatment, but take the time to get to know their patients. It is a testament to the affectionately nicknamed Dr T and his staff that children like Chris know them by name and can smile while talking about them, even if they do sometimes have to stick them with needles!
Although patients like Chris can rely on the amazing hospital staff to care for him thanks to your dedicated support, the need for more funding is ever-present. We need to make sure these vital health care services are in place long into the future and grow to provide life-changing care for many more Haitians. Anything you can do to help make this vision a reality will be a blessing to us and the Haitians we exist to help.
Thank you for everything you have done to support maternity and paediatric services in Haiti.
With much love and thanks,
All the HHA team
Dr Toussaint - Chief Medical Director
Emergency appeal success