Archive for the ‘general’ Category

Return to Bahon

Posted: October 27, 2011 by Cap Haitien Health Network in general, Julian Malinak, Juline

We made our third trip to Bahon, what the Haitian government says has the worst health indicators in the north and second worst in Haiti.  It has a twin parish with Holy Family Catholic Church of Nashville, Tennessee, led by Patty Gaines. Our last planned trip, 1 year ago, was cancelled by the tropical storm, as was Patty’s trip, so the village was even more in need of help.

It was 2 hours by bumpy ride from Cap, now seemed to be a little shorter and less bumpy. We were driven by our friend Father Abraham, as our newer, better car for this difficult trip was still not credentialled to be used after 5 months (see story from Elisabeth about that). We had nice stops at Hopital Sacre Coeur, where we met with Dr. Previl, and at Hopital Grand Riviere, where we got a grand tour of a very nice not well known new hospital staffed by 21 Cuban docs and nurses (see blog by Julian).

Josh and Anna in Grand Riviere du Nord

Father Gaby was our host, and runs a very nice parish with a school, rectory/guest house, and clinic, called St. Joseph’s, with the help of Sister Rose and Sister Cecilia (who is also a nurse and runs the clinic).  The sisters have taken care of Joshua since he was a little baby and first came there and slept in a little “manger” that they made for him.  This time he was following around and playing with the boys of the village, who all learned how to pronounce his name very well.

This clinic has a doctor working there only once a week (not the day we were there), the rest of the time Sister Cecilia runs it.

Next morning we did clinic, with the help of Elisabeth and Juline, and Julian did some pill cutting so we could distribute a large amount of donated 100 mg captopril tabs and also for 500 mg griseofulvin tabs we bought at the pharmacy in Cap for Tinea Capitis.  We saw 35 kids.  Included was a now 2 year old that a pediatrician with us last year found to have anal atresia with a vaginal fistula. With great difficulty, we helped arrange for surgery in Cange by a pediatric surgeon from Harvard.  Her anus is now beautiful as an anus can be, and she is growing and developing pretty well.

The worst case of the day was a boy with an extensive dental infection.   

Bahon has a lot of dental problems (there is a theory there is something about the water) and we brought a lot of toothpaste and some brushes we could gather.  We are trying to arrange for mobile clinics with the Cap Haitien Dental Institute and ongoing dental visits there by the Haitian dentist, Dr. Junior, and Patty has a dentist coming with her team in January.

Julian, Juline and I also visited the MSPP Dispensaire that is also in Bahon, a few hundred feet south of the Catholic clinic, on the river.  It has a delivery area, the nurses deliver babies in the clinic, and provide other care, as there is no longer the weekly physician visit that they used to have. We met Mdm Napolean the nurse, and another worker there told us about her 5 year old son with undescended testicle (which is much later than would be ideal to be treated for that condition).  She brought him to be seen at the clinic we held St. Joseph’s, and we used the Network calendar to find out when there will be surgeons and urologists who might be able to treat him.

Dispensaire of Bahon, along the Grand Riviere du Nord and close to St. Joseph’s clinic

We encouraged the staff at both clinics to interact and assist each other, especially as St. Joseph’s is the only one that gets visiting teams.  We are looking for organizations and teams that might like to help the Dispenaire.

We always enjoy our visits to Bahon.  It is a beautiful community that is isolated and needs more assistance in health and dental care.


Notes after Florida Hospital Flagler’s first team visit

Posted: September 28, 2011 by Cap Haitien Health Network in general

Our Network partnered with Haiti Hospital Appeal and Haiti Marycare’s Jacquesyl clinic to host a new group from a community hospital in northeast Florida.  The team consisted of a family practice doctor, nurses, other ancillary personnel from the hospital, administration, and the hospital Chaplain (Florida Hospital is a hospital which is a mission of the Seventh Day Adventist church).   Here are notes from some of the team members:

From our COO—Eumee :

It was amazing to meet the three young missionaries doing the work for God at Haiti Hospital Appeal…and they are so happy about serving too. I realized that a little from us can stretch to reach many people in Haiti. I hope many more healthcare professionals can take the opportunity to volunteer at HHA and be reconnected to “WHY” we came into healthcare in the first place. We often forget that being in the healthcare is a calling. This trip definitely reminded me of that.

Thank you for many blessings this trip awarded me!

From Cassie—Nurse Anesthetist

Thank you very much for the opportunity to join with you guys on the Haiti mission. I really appreciate that you all welcomed me with open arms and made me feel like part of your family. I’ve never felt so welcome in a group like that before. I was happy to be back home, but part of me wished I had more days to spend with you. I was looking forward to helping the needy children and the sick patients, I’m happy yet surprised to say that this mission did more for me than I expected. The group’s A.M. devotions nourish me spiritually and brought me closer to God.  I can honestly say I was not expecting that. Thank you for making me feel blessed and replenishing my spiritual soul.

I’m looking forward to the next mission.

Gracefully yours


From Madeline—ICU RN

     One should never let fear, finances, intimidation or other people’s opinions get on the way when it’s time for action doing GOD’s works in caring for others less fortunate.  Everything is possible with GOD.  He clears the path in a way no one else can Dr. Kaplan and his team’s service is a beautiful seed that started this garden…so as more seeds fall into this garden, more will blossom…all for good.  This is just to say that collectively we can decrease  pain, hunger, and suffering in this world if we try. Thanks to all the people who have made a difference  in the life of my Haitian  brothers.


From Yves—Hospice Aid

I want to begin with a quote from Louisa May Alcott: “Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them,  and try to follow them.” It has always been a dream of mine to be part of a group to help make a difference, and when I was presented with an opportunity to go back to my homeland  and help, I realize that God had been listening to the prayers of my heart all along.  So thank you to you Dr. Kaplan, and everyone else who made this trip possible.  This trip was like being amongst family because of the love and respect we had for each other. It was truly a blessing working with all of you guys.

From Robert—Chaplain

“It is better to give than to receive”  This is truth.  I am so thankful to have been a part of this team…I simply can’t express that enough.  My soul needed this trip.  Yes, we served others on this trip…Yes, we gave of our time, money, etc…  But we all received so much more.  Thank you Dr. Kaplan and all at Cap Health Network.  You do great work!  It was so easy to work with you in the planning of this trip.  I always felt safe and comfortable knowing that I was placing our team in your caring and competent handsMay God bless you…thank you!

Escape to Haiti

Posted: May 7, 2011 by Cap Haitien Health Network in general, Uncategorized

Elisabeth and I just returned from Miami, where we dropped off another vehicle to Sante Shipping Lines for the Network Support Team to use in their coordination and distribution work. It is 2006 Ford Escape, ergo “Escape to Haiti” !! This vehicle has been, and is noted in surveys, to be very reliable, so knock on wood! It also will be the first environmentally friendly hybrid that I have seen in Haiti, so far anyway, getting 26.5 mpg!

The shipping process is pretty straight forward, thanks to the help of Gigi and Gerald (pictured) of Sante Shipping Lines and CASCO shipping agent Tony Marcelli (tonymarcelli10). It costs $950 for shipping a small SUV like this to Cap (or PAP if you prefer). Then, we have had the great help of Dr. Eugene to shephard the vehicle through customs and insurance, and this time, Gabie Vincent of Sonje Ayiti is assisting us as well.

Look out for a silent blue SUV, in electric mode on the busy daytime streets in Cap soon, we hope!


Pilate trip

Posted: March 9, 2011 by Cap Haitien Health Network in general, Juline

The team have visited Pilate with Dr. Jeanty form Shada clinic to assess and treat some patients with disabilities. We see 11 patients in the clinic and visited 10 patients at their house because they was unable to get out their homes.

We saw a 16 year old girl who had a fever 2 years ago which left her paralyzed. Her vision is very poor and its difficult for her to speak. She was a student in 5th grade before she had the fever. She would love to go back to school but she afraid of her classmates reactions. She along with 4 other patients will be coming to the rehab clinic at Haiti Hospital Appeal.

Pilate has 60000 habitants their water system is good. half of the people get their water from a pipe system connected to a water reservoir, the community put their hands together to get money to buy aquatabs and chlorox for purification. The other half of the people get their water from a water source next to a running river the people use that water to drink, wash their clothes, and to cook. There are water faucets in every part of Pilate but only some of them are function.

The team had given the pastor some soaps to distribute to the community.

caphealth RE: List of Site needs of water purification

Posted: March 7, 2011 by Cap Haitien Health Network in general


In Carrefour Jede in the courtyard of the Catholic School, Fountains of Hope has installed 2-700 tanks, one for the school and one for the general population. At St. Isidore which is 2 kilometers from Jede, Fountains of Hope also installed 2-700 gallon tanks to which the population has access. Installation at both sites took place in mid February, 2011. Techs have been trained at each site so safe water should be readily available.

Fountains of Hope also did an installation at Grisson-Garde. You might check with the Catholic priest at Grisson-Garde about the details.

Judy Harpenau
St. Bartholomew Parish
Columbus IN

List of Site needs of water purification

Posted: March 5, 2011 by Cap Haitien Health Network in general, Uncategorized

This blog is dedicated to sharing the basic information we have on water access at our members’ sites, towns and villages. The info is not in any order of priority or location – it’s completely random.

I would be grateful if you could read through the information on your own area and feeback any changes or additional information that would be helpful for this water project. This will be use by the ‘water network’ to prioritise and coordinate the work being done in north Haiti.

If your area is not listed here, we will be getting in touch with you! However, if you would like to speed up the process we would welcome you to email the details you know about your area, similar to the info below, including the population size.

With thanks

(509) 34411546

Centre de Sante de Labadi/Labadee/Labadie
Population: 6,000
For months now I have been trying to get someone to look at the water purification system in Labadee – It’s been there for 5 years but has never worked. The system uses 4 solar panels for UV purification, but two panels have been smashed from a fallen tree. I also found out recently that the pump was never installed (miscommunications with donor and village) and subsequently never was able to be used.
They have fortunately only had 4 cholera cases there so far, but the potential of an outbreak is huge. The whole community use ‘la source’ to drink, bathe and do laundry, with houses further up the mountain using the river for toileting. All of the 3 schools have bucket filters supplied by Vwa Ayiti, but nothing for the general population.
Oxfam would not send an engineer to look at the system as they said it was out of their area.
Labadee is a fishing village so its is easy to reach by boat. It’s a 30 min drive plus a 15 min boat taptap journey from Cap.
The mayor for the village, Josue Charitable is the person to liaise with and he will be able to organise to get some people together to be trained to maintain the system.

St. Suzanne
US support of HBHH, Patricia Eddy
Population: 38,000
7 wells 6 with hand pumps, one motor pump with cistern used for drinking, cooking and cleaning (3 recently repaired)
School well – no water for most of the 3 years it’s been there. Instead, they capture rain water with buckets.
No way to consistently treat water – had aquatabs provided by CHHN (us) but nothing now.
Electricity: solar power with 12v battery provides electricity for clinic, church and nuns’ house. Some buildings have generators, but no EDH (gov electricity) in area.
Reason: they are in need of safe water to drink and cook with as have previously been hit hard by cholera in this area.
Patricia Eddy is very keen to get a water system in place at the clinic to provide for clinic and school as neither facility have easy access to water (nearest well 15 min walk). There is a secured location at the back of the clinic.

Limonade (Sonje Ayiti)
Population 48,000
Gaby Vincent is a Haitien American lady who is president of Sonje Ayiti. Along with agricultural and other projects, they also do health promotion, which has been magnified since the cholera outbreak. They have ORPs (oral rehydration points) set up across the region to educate the community on hand washing, and giving out aquatabs, chlorox and ors. She is a well-needed advocate for the region and is keen to get access to safe drinking water for the communes. Limonade is a big region, with a total population of 48,000. Bois de Lance
is one commune which makes up about half of the population. There are 60 wells in the whole of Limonade, 25 in Bois de Lance , some with hand pumps, some with no pumps. Cima is a much smaller commune, which only has one well, with no cover and no pump. This happens to also be where 15 orphans from the earthquake are residing amongst the community. They have no access to clean water, education and they are malnurished. 8 children and 8 adults have died from cholera in Cima alone. Gaby reports this is the community in greatest need.
Brief view of area: 1st rural section Basse Plaine (Bord de Mer, CIMA, Meniac, La Genivre, Bas Canal, Du Haut, Chavanneau areas), 2nd rural section of Bois de Lance where half the population of Limonade lives (22,000 inhabitants), and the 3rd rural section Roucou, then Limonade.

(US contact Mary Lou Larkin)
Population 8,000 mountanous region
2 wells, with hand pumps and fresh water source for drinking and cooking. No access to purified water except aquatabs and chlorox from CHHN. Down river from source is used for laundry and bathing.
Reason: they have difficulty in accessing clean water. “It’s a major service to the population.” They are requesting a system for clinic and use for general population – they have a secured area in back yard of clinic.

(US contact Mary Lou Larkin)
Population 10,000 mountainous region.
4 wells including one in back yard of clinic (not secure location at present but can build wall).
All have hand pumps. Also have natural source which serves about 50% of population.

Ranquitte (info from Ben da West Clinic, in touch with community leader)
Population: 21,000 in 3 sections
8 pumps all with hand pumps in one section, but some are broken – they weren’t sure about the other sections.
The clinic give out aquatabs and chlorox when they have them available.
There is a natural source in the mountainous area.
Reason: to protect the population from diseases.

(information from ICC clinic and St Joseph’s church clinic)
Population: 60,000
There is a large resevoir of untreated water connected to a pipe system that takes the water to about 10% of houses. Individuals pay for installation but not for water.
Those without this use water either from:
River – which people use for toileting too.
‘Public water’ resevoir of captured water. This is free but again, untreated.
Reason: There is no access to treated water so people that can affor to are obligued to come to Cap to buy water. The area is very mountainous with limite access to any water at all. The river is a very unclean source as people use it for both drinking and toileting.
The clinics have access to piped water but not purified.

Port Margot
(inofrmation from ICC and St. Malachy Clinic)
Population: 45,000
The majority of people use the source or the river, or dig holes next to the river for drinking water. The river is also used for toileting.
There are about 30-40 wells, all with hand pumps but are not used for drinking.
The few that can afford have access to bought, purified water in bags or large blue ‘gallon’ containers (80gds for ‘gallon’)
Both clinics have a well with a motor pump but no purification.
‘Hope Fountains’ installed a chlorine filter at ?St Theresa’s School last week. Don’t know if they are planning further work in the area.

Bar Limbe
(information from ICC Clinic)
Population: 20,000
natural source used for drinking water
One public well with hand pump – not used for drinking
Access to bought ‘gallons’ and bags (30gds and 60gds respectively)

World Water Missions have installed purification system. People walk up to 2km to access the water.

(information from St. Elizabeth Health Centre)
Population: >5,000
5-6 wells
Awaiting more information

(information from Jacquesyl Community Health Centre)
Population: 3,000
Have a water tower which pumps water from well which community bought 6 months ago. It is inconsistantly treated by cholorine and aquatabs, when available (rarely). Community charged 5gds/bucket for this whether it is treated or not.
There is also a water well with hand pump, not treated.
Report noone drinks from river.

(information from Danda Dispensary)
Population: 6,000
There are two hand pumped welss which are the main source of drinking water (untreated).
The river is mainly used to bath and do laundry.
The school have two small bucket fliters for water purification, but would benefit from more as have over 400 pupils.
The two wells are in the centre of town, near the school, church and clinic. The river is less than 100m away.

(near St. Suzanne)
Population: 4,800
No wells-have tried drilling but no water.
Use the natural source only. No access to purified water.

(information from Borgne Health Centre)
No information on population size but many mountainous villages in region eg Tibouk, Petit Bouk, Ml Bouk, Malbourgne, Trou dans fait, Cote de fait, Chapay (probably all spelt incorrectly)
Fresh source used in all places.
Oxfam present in Tibouk – providing aquatabs and ORS. Give to families, not at water source.

St. Raphael
Population: 8000
Resevoir of water owned by mayor/government with pipe system to some houses. However, road was dug up 1 month ago which has cut the access to this water. People were paying 150gds per month for the service.
Other sources: the natural source and one well with hand pump.
wells are difficult to install as it is thick, mountainous rock.
Aquatabs only way to treat the water – don’t always have access to them.
Reason: to prevent deaths and illnesses.

(Information from Centre de Dante de Dondon)
Population: 10,000
Mayor owns resevoir with pipe system. Due to low supply of water relative to number of houses, the water is give to different sections of the community each day, therefore access to each house every 2 days. Pipe system only goes to about 10% of population. Pay 100gds/month for this, and water untreated.
Those who cannot afford this use the natural source.

Population: 5000 mountainous region
most people use natural source and the river to drink from. there is piped water from a resevoir for those that can afford it, but they often go a couple of months without access, ?reason. There is no access to treated water.
The catholic Church (Notre Dame de Miracles, US group) distributed bio sand filters 2-3 years ago to houses, and have a water comittee which overseas the use.
Mayor no: 37763170
WWM already working here.

Grand Basin
(information from Centre de Sante de Notre Dame du Lourdes)
Population: 14,000
About 200 people have access to water pipes, but not given everyday (rota in place to allow access to greater number of houses)
About 10 natural sources in area
Water project: ?Fonhtut’ from PAP installed the pipes in 1987. Not treated. Is still working but needs maintanance and not enough water to supply everyone.
Mayor no: 37780512

US support of Meike
No wells, river and source is the only access to water. Very remote town in mountainous region.
SIFAT are in contact with Colas for this area.

Population 30-60,000
Slum district of Cap Haitien
SOIL NGO supporting Shada but focusing their projects more on dry toileting
Many wells, mainly with no pump.
Next to brackish river, used for toileting.
Have tuff tanks to store non-purified water for hand washing next to SOIL toilets
SIFAT already working with Shada. issued 3 small systems (<100 people per system) and will be continuing to work to improve access to purified water throughout.

Visit to Caracol clinic and beach

Posted: March 2, 2011 by Cap Haitien Health Network in general, Uncategorized

As part of my recent visit to the north, last Friday I went with Juline and new Network supporter DJail Chovsky to visit the village of Caracol, where we have a Network member clinic supported by the priest, Father du Village. They lost their social service doctor in November, and we have been trying to find ways of helping this clinic. One of the projects is to include this seaside village on the itinerary of the Floating Doctors medical team coming to the north in March.
Father du Village was away this past week, so we met with Mdm Michelene Jerome, one of 2 nurses that run the clinic. She took us on a little tour, while also taking care of a young woman in labor. The clinic has several rooms, some newly arrived x-ray equipment, and a lab.
We also went down to the lovely beach that is a launch site for several fishing boats. We were directed to Msr Jackson Cadet, head of the fisherman’s organization called Brigade Maritime in Action. We briefed him on Floating Doctors, which he is happy to cooperate with, and obtained his phone number to send to the crew of Southern Wind so they can make contact. 

Ted Kaplan, MD