Dear National Society!
As you are aware, the loss of life and the number of injured people following Tuesday’s earthquake in Haiti is overwhelming. As medical caregivers, we all want to help those in need following this disaster. The leadership of the World Federation of Societies of Intensive and Critical Care Medicine (WFSICCM) is supporting the international response operations via our member Society, the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM). SCCM is in touch with national relief organizations and U.S. and Haitian authorities to see how its members can help ensure that everyone receives the medical care needed. The airports in Haiti have been opened, and the Port-au-Prince airport is running 24-hour operations.
The WFSICCM leadership recommends that volunteer efforts should be channeled through well-established organizations, with very good knowledge of the area. Volunteers should be previously trained or have experience in this type of deployment, which essentially is a military type “war zone” operations. Individuals should be self-sufficient, have the minimal immunizations and prophylaxis and a passport valid for a minimum of six months.
For more detailed information on volunteering please refer to Project HOPE, which is collecting a database of volunteers from all members of the critical care team. Please see Project Hope Job Postings.
The WFSICCM will keep member Societies updated as additional information becomes available on disaster relief efforts. Please also visit SCCM’s Disaster Resources Web page for the most up to date information.
The thoughts of the entire worldwide critical care community are with all Haitians affected by this earthquake and with those providing them much needed care.
Sincerely, Edgar J Jimenez, MD WFSICCM President
Orlando, Florida January 16th 2010