Stanford doctor's first person account of helping in Haiti #HaitiDrDispatch


All of my friends are extraordinarily awesome people, and I keep being reminded of that. Yesterday, I sent an email to a doctor friend of mine at Stanford (Anil Menon, MD) about Haiti's need for medical professionals, and he immediately responded, "en route."

Stanford has sent at team of emergency medical professionals:

 

A team of emergency medicine physicians and nurses from Stanford departed for Haiti early this morning to aid with relief efforts.

The medical team will spend three weeks in Haiti providing assistance to earthquake survivors. Members include Paul Auerbach, MD, Anil Menon, MD, and Robert Norris, MD.

The medical team was assembled at the request of global humanitarian nonprofit International Medical Corp., which previously partnered with Stanford on a medical aid mission to Northern Iraq.

 

Today, (Jan 16, 2010) at 12:19pm ET, Anil sent me the following via SMS.

(I have done mild edits for grammar, spelling and clarification)

 

Leaving this second to port au prince from Santa Domingo [in the Dominican Republic].  The military transport is slowed by [Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's] visit.  People in DR are sad but life goes on. 

It took so long to buy mess at the pharmacy, usual pace of business, but they have given us a discount for a good cause. Narcotics are centrally controlled so hard to come by. Our whole group is nervous because there is no food or water gauranteed so we are ready to live off Powerbars and beef jerky.

We are prepared to do work and procedures beyond our scope, everyone is apprehensive.

I'm going with 4 nurses: Julie does ski patrol, Gabby is from Texas, Jonathan travels Europe for 3 months with one bag, Heather is just scared.  

The docs: Paul wrote the book on wilderness medicine but hasn't seen this situation before, Bob our ed director and Ian an intellectual.  No one has the experience in this. Maybe my military training is most appropriate with the meds you need, how do you get there, how do you set up tent housing hospital not to mention the security....

 

I'll keep relaying Anil's dispatches as soon as I can after they come in. Right now his team has been turned around and is heading back to Santo Domingo. He should have better Internet access there and thus more updates.

Thanks for caring.

Anil Menon, MD is a clinical instructor at Stanford School of Medicine focused on surgery and emergency medicine. His research interests are Aerospace Medicine, Emergency Medicine, and Wilderness Medicine. He graduated from Stanford Med in 2006, received a degree in mechanical engineering in 2003 and became a full ER doctor in 2009. He has practiced medicin in combat in Afghanistan and will be practicing aerospace medicine next year at NASA. He's part of a team sent to Haiti by Stanford.

This entire series is chronicled under the HaitiDrDispatch tag