One month after the devastating earthquake, Partners In Health (PIH) launched the STAND WITH HAITI Fund, a $125 million plan both to provide emergency relief to earthquake victims and to help Haitians rebuild their public health system.
Tens of thousands of our supporters, including individuals as well as organizations and institutions, have already generously contributed $86 million to the fund.
About $30 million went immediately to emergency relief—including emergency surgical services and supplies —as allocated by the plan set in February.
However, PIH has never been a disaster relief organization. The bulk of the remaining STAND WITH HAITI Fund budget is designated for the type of work PIH is best known for--working with the local government and communities to build and strengthen public health systems -- with an emphasis on rebuilding and strengthening facilities and services that were badly damaged in the earthquake and desperately needed after it.
A flagship project to strengthening Haiti’s health system is the construction of the new state-of-the-art national teaching hospital in Mirebalais, Haiti. Construction has already begun on the $15 million facility and it is scheduled to open before the second anniversary of the earthquake on January 12, 2012. In addition to bringing high-quality medical services to an estimated 140,000 people in central Haiti, the 320-bed hospital will help train the country’s next generation of doctors, nurses, and health workers.
The team has also begun constructing and renovating existing facilities to handle a growing volume of patients following the earthquake. The STAND WITH HAITI Fund has designated roughly $5.7 million for these infrastructure improvements.
In addition to constructing and improving the facilities themselves, bolstering clinical services and community development programs at these centers is a top priority. The fund has allocated $57 million over the next two years to bring comprehensive services to poor communities, especially specialized services for which the need was greatly expanded by the earthquake, such as mental health, rehabilitation, and surgical care. The team is also in the process of hiring and training hundreds of community health workers to work in their villages, connecting their neighbors with health centers and helping to bring services to even the most remote areas.