Earlier this month, a team of nurses from PIH’s partner organization in Peru, Socios En Salud (SES), traveled to Haiti to assist with Partners In Health/Zanmi Lasante’s (PIH/ZL) disaster relief efforts.
“As part of the PIH family, we feel special ties to our colleagues in Haiti and hope we can support them in any way we can,” said SES International Project Coordinator Elna Osso, who is leading the group. “We have the full support of our director, Dr Jaime Bayona and the entire SES team, ” added Osso.
The SES nurses poses a wealth of skills to offer PIH’s team in Haiti, including: post operative care, medical-surgical nursing, intermediate and critical care, and TB/HIV care. In addition, Osso has 19 years of clinical experience. Another one of the SES team’s nurses worked with PIH/SES since the early 1990s. As she notes, the team’s skills would help support the post-operative needs that will be arising now that the vast majority of emergency surgeries and amputations have been completed.
“Independently we have served in disaster zones but not in the magnitude of what has happened in Haiti,” said Osso. “Two years ago there was a 7.9 earthquake south of Lima where the SES nurses served. I have worked in rural areas in Haiti and Mexico, Guatemala and Mozambique.”
SES, Partners In Health’s sister organization in Carabayllo, Peru, offers healthcare to an estimated annual population of 700,000 Peruvians. The majority of those people live in the countryside north of Lima, the country’s capital. SES’s work focuses heavily on the prevention and treatment of drug-resistant tuberculosis and HIV. In addition, the organization works closely with the Peruvian Government to provide important training and support to help implement HIV/TB policies throughout the country. SES was formed in 1994.
Osso and the SES team will be returning from Haiti later this week.