Howard University Hospital Donates Ambulance to Haiti Relief Effort

WASHINGTON (May 27) –More than four months after a devastating earthquake left more than 200,000 people dead and hundreds of thousands homeless, Haiti is still struggling to recover, particularly its health care system.

To help the effort, Howard University Hospital donated an ambulance Monday to the beleaguered country.

The ambulance was handed over to the National Organization for the Advancement of Haitians (NOAH), which will see that it is transported to Haiti, where it will be used by two hospitals.

Larry Warren, chief executive officer of the hospital, said the donation was within the hospital’s 148-year history of serving those in greatest need.  He also thanked Dr. Shelly McDonald-Pinkett, president of the hospital’s medical staff and interim chair of the Department of Medicine at Howard University College of Medicine, for offering the suggestion to donate the vehicle and putting the process into motion.

“It became clear that we could not identify a more important need than to offer this ambulance to the people of Haiti through the National Organization for the Advancement of Haitians,” Warren said.  “On behalf of the staff and friends of Howard University Hospital, we give gift this ambulance to you and the people of Haiti as a small token of our commitment to you.”

Accepting the vehicle for NOAH was Joseph Baptiste, president of the organization’s Washington chapter.

“You can be assured that we definitely are going to put this to good use,” Baptiste told the crowd gathered in the courtyard in front of the hospital.  “Right now, we are responding to patients on the back of pickup trucks.  So, this ambulance is like a Cadillac for us.”

The vehicle, complete with medical equipment and supplies, will be used by Eliazar Germain Hospital in Petionville, a suburb of the capital Port-au-Prince, and nearby Aimer Haiti Hospital, a field hospital that has been established in an abandoned amusement park.  The field hospital has an operating room and a five-bed inpatient unit.

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