Ordinarily this is a hospital for paying patients. Most of the people of Port-au-Prince cannot afford to pay for healthcare and there is no government subsidized healthcare in Haiti. So, until the earthquake, the common person had no access to care. After the quake, the government mandated that care be free for 6 months. That meant that none of the medical staff would be paid. Most of the Haitian doctors left the country and went to the Dominican Republic. Some of the nurses stayed and volunteer their time. The hospital relies upon volunteer staff to care for the huge numbers of patients that have flocked there since the earthquake.
Here is a little tour of the facility....
The pre-op ward:
The post-op ward:
Overflow into the halls:
The medical/surgical floor:
Hospital tents....house more patients on the grounds:
The hospital laundry facility:
Insect control in the OR:
The pediatric ward:
This facility is as nice as it gets in Haiti. What you don't see in these pictures are the leaks in the roof when it rains, the many brown-outs during the day when electricity fails, and the obvious lack of equipment, like wheelchairs, transport litters, IV poles etc.
Thanks to generous donations of medical supplies from all around the world, however, we did have the supplies we needed to get the job done....a little ingenuity and imagination helped when we didn't have exactly what we needed.
What I find saddest, though, is that this free healthcare will eventually end. The hospital will have to go back to its "fee for services" status. I cannot help but wonder what will happen to these poor people at that point.