In early November, 2014 the FHH Board of Directors held their board meeting in Haiti for the first time, instead of their usual meeting location in Pewaukee, Wisconsin.  Several board members have visited the clinic previously, in various stages of construction, and some were there for the first time.  Here is the first guest blog post by our visiting board members.

Tom Mahn, MD

Tom Mahn, MD

I recently visited Haiti to see Katie Wolf MD and Cherlie Severe who are Christian medical missionaries in Gatineau. I met Katie many years ago when she was working as a physician at St. Joes. Now she is a full time medical missionary along with Cherlie, an RN who also worked at St. Joes. Cherlie is from Jeremie, Haiti which is down the mountain from the clinic in Gatineau. Several years ago when I visited, they were seeing patients two days a week in a tin roof hut. Now there are beautiful buildings there including a clinic, pharmacy, storage depot, and residence. Plans are underway at some point for an inpatient unit and women’s health center among other things. There is a community outreach program that has included water, hygiene, and seed program. Last week a visiting group even did regional animal vaccines!

The road from Jeremie (where they live) to Gatineau is like nothing you have ever ridden on. The 10 mile trip takes 1 ½ hours each way. They go through tires like crazy. When the residence is finished they (and visiting teams) will be able to stay at the clinic during the week which will be a big help.

Katie and Cherlie are full time in Haiti. There are three Haitian part-time employees: a chaplain, community outreach coordinator, and clinic/pharmacy administrator. This is a locally sustainable clinic that has become the pride of the local people. Patients are charged a little for visits and medications, though no one is turned away for financial reasons. People come dressed to the nines and walk up to four hours to get there.

I am on the board of this organization: Friends for Health in Haiti. If you want to know more or contribute, let me know, visit our website: www.friendsforhealthinhaiti.org, or best of all – come to our fund raising banquet April 25. FHH has done a lot to get the clinic to this point but there is a lot more that can be done.

-Tom Mahn, MD

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