With a relatively, newly elected President, Michel Martelly, and the appointment of a long-awaited Prime Minister, Garry Conille, this week, Haiti is at the brink of a new day or presumably a new era. For whatever purpose and/or consequence, one may feel the desire to breathe again, dream again, dream to hope and hope to dream.
Be that as it may, Aesclepius Medical Society (AMS) and all other Haitian-American medical organizations unequivocally have a new opportunity to re-organize, revitalize, review their policies and buckle up to exercise strategies geared towards creating the building blocks for a new health infrastructure and development in Haiti through Capacity Transforming and Capacity Building as the philosophical strategy.
The earthquake of January 2010 did not teach us any new lessons, it displayed, however, under the international radar how offensive natural disasters can be and how much intellectual and physical power Haiti needs to move forward with time along with the rest of the world. Besides bare common sense, the data, time and again, resonate Haiti’s plight, at least, for basic health care. That fact established, one may hope that our new Haitian government will reach out to the clinical organizations abroad or the said organizations should coalesce forces as a delegation to offer and/or participate in policy and programmatic assistance to the government. That effort of any of the two approaches with no political stratum, etiquette or ambition can prove to be phenomenal quantum energy for Haiti in that it will be on voluntary basis, with futuristic vision and practical ideology. There is no potential loss in this approach, but calculated benefits for the population at large.
With all due credits granted to the international community, the Haitian clinicians abroad: physicians, physician-assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, nursing assistants and allied health professionals showed willingness, eagerness and ability to attend to Haiti in the wake of the event of January 12, 2010. That cadre of spirit is still present and, if any, will increase exponentially over time to support Haiti, particularly if it is known that a delegation of advisors of this sort is actively participating, at any level, in the formulation of a new health care system for Haiti. Obviously, the algebra is not there to prove the extent of that prediction, but the strong will is there to validate its potential impact.
In substance, given the longstanding, constant wondering and pondering about health care in Haiti and given the collective knowledge on public health principles and related experiences among clinicians practicing abroad, it is not far-fetched to dare thinking that such clinicians have the obligation, if not the responsibility, to offer to our Haitian leaders our corresponding perspective for Haiti’s tomorrow health care plan. While, at first glance, this intent may seem presumptuous, it is rather a pro-active measure that challenges civil inertia in a clinico-administrative fashion: A new challenge with utmost expectations that should reverberate around pragmatic policies, viable methodologies, clear metrics, implementation steps and quality measures.
AMS has started the conversation and been interacting with other organizations towards the essence of a possible delegation with a clearly defined mission and vision. All in all, to help improve health in Haiti with ideas that will promote an ubiquitous health care delivery system to encompasses: prevention of diseases, treatment of ailments, cure for debilitating conditions, patient education and self-management.
That the future of health care in Haiti to be acceptable can only be envisioned with a 21st century model of medicine, the knowledge that Haitian physicians living outside of Haiti has acquired around the world coupled with the wisdom of humble clinicians practicing in Haiti and the Haitian government can lead the people of Haiti to live and reflect the life of others who exist in the western hemisphere.