The Fogarty International Center’s newsletter “Global health Matters” reports that a new tuberculosis hospital and research center has opened in Port-au-Prince to treat patients and look at ways to improve care.
The Haitian Study Group and Opportunistic Infection and Kaposi’s Sarcoma or referred to as GHESKIO opened the new facility five years after the catastrophic earthquake destroyed the major TB hospitals in Haiti’s capital.
GHESKIO www.gheskio.org, a longtime Fogarty grantee, operating in partnership with the Weill Cornell Medical College, was recently awarded a seven year grant by NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases www.niaid.nih.gov and also works with the Haitian Ministry of Health.
The new 35 room open air hospital will be the site for clinical trials. A lab located nearby is equipped with cutting-edge technology enabling physician and scientists to conduct advanced research to discover the molecular underpinnings of TB resistance.
After the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, CDC received one time funding to reestablish and strengthen Haiti’s public health system and address immediate public health needs. Today, CDC is engaged in a wide range of activities from HIV and TB to cholera treatment, safe water.
CDC www.cdec.gov works with the Haitian Ministry of Health, relief organizations, the local GHESKIO. The goals are to:
- Eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV
- Eliminate the threat of cholera
- Ensure a sustainable public health system
- Reduce the under-five mortality rate from vaccine preventable disease by 35 percent, reduce maternal mortality by 30 percent, and reduce the prevalence of TB by 25 percent
Since the 2010 earthquake, CDC has made significant investment in the national laboratory and disease surveillance systems in Haiti, reports David Lowrance M.D. Director of CDC’s Haiti office.
He adds, “Although Haiti has made significant progress much more is needed. Some children are still not receiving routine immunizations and progress has been slow and limited in restoring the physical health infrastructure.”
USAID www.usaid.gov since 2010, has provided relief, recovery, long term reconstruction assistance, and been actively involved in providing access to basic medical care to about 50 percent of the Haitian population through the support of over 160 clinics nationwide.