Tag Archives: conditions

Maine medical team describes conditions in Haiti

The young woman had been pinned in the earthquake, her right leg freshly amputated below the knee. Her left leg was a mess, femur shattered. When Ron Chicoine saw her at (Hospital) Immaculee Conception, she’d been sitting for two weeks waiting for help.

“She was just amazing,” Chicoine said, even positioning herself onto the operating room table when surgeons were ready.

Mona Theriault remembers one 5-year-old boy who’d broken his wrist in a fall and sat in the waiting room, quiet, dripping blood on the floor, bone sticking out.

“There were a lot of stoic people there,” she said.

Chicoine and Theriault, both from St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center, and the other half of their volunteer medical team returned from a trip to Les Cayes, Haiti, last week. The team’s organizer, Cynthia DeSoi, got back Thursday.

They performed roughly 40 surgeries in six days, many on bones that had been broken and crushed in the earthquake that claimed nearly a quarter-million lives. Conditions were sparse. Surgeons wore head lamps when the hospital’s electricity cut out. Tools were soaked in buckets of bleach when the water cut out.

Click on the link for the rest of today’s story by Kathryn Skelton of the Lewiston Sun-Journal.

Haiti mayor at Bates College to describe horrors

LEWISTON — Wilson Louis, mayor of the Haitian district of Cité Soleil was at Bates College on Thursday night and he had plenty to say. But Louis speaks only French and relies on translators to convey his remarks while in the United States.

That’s not much of a problem in Lewiston.

A half-dozen local people — including Lewiston’s mayor and several Bates students — were able to bridge the gap between Louis’ native tongue and the non-French in the audience.

For an hour, Louis described horrendous conditions in his earthquake-battered country.

In Cité Soleil, a city of a half-million people, many have lost their homes and are living on the streets, he said. There are children who have lost fingers and toes. Many don’t have access to medical care, in spite of a massive global effort to help them.

“The situation is really terrible,” Louis said. “Those people need food. They need water; they need medical supplies.”

Click on the link for the rest of today’s story by Mark LaFlamme of the Lewiston Sun-Journal.