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CHI/ISK believes that health is not simply the absence of disease, but the ability to fulfill human potential. We partner with sister organizations and isolated rural Haitian communities. By returning to the same villages every 3 months, we help them provide continuous primary healthcare to their population and to address the biological, social, and environmental causes of disease.
The Community Health Initiative is a series of mobile clinics and ancillary services providing ongoing healthcare to selected villages in Haiti. Since the catastrophic earthquake in January of 2010, the needs in Haiti have increased dramatically and the task ahead of us is greater than ever. During our traditional missions, patients are provided vitamins, treated for parasites, and screened for malnutrition and other chronic diseases. We partner with local village health workers and provide health education to the community. We perform minor surgical procedures when appropriate. In addition, we treat a number of acute diseases like pneumonia, malaria, typhoid fever, and dysentery that might otherwise be fatal.
The Community Health Initiative aims to go beyond the average care provided by most aid organizations. We believe that the definition of quality health care does not change at the border of any given country and that we need to provide the highest quality of health care possible to our Haitian patients. We do so by establishing medical continuity of care for a very focused subset of rural Haitian villages, much the same as regular check-‐ups do here in the U.S. Our patients are tracked through a medical records system, such that we can provide real documentation that your donations are making a real difference in someone’s life. Our efforts are about more than just making claims. We feel that in order to be the care providers our patients deserve and responsible stewards of our funding we need to prove that we accomplish what we claim. To succeed in this, we bring researchers to our villages who evaluate us and track our progress. We partner with other organizations, learn from their experiences, and adopt that knowledge into our own processes and protocols. Perhaps most importantly, we partner with the Haitian populace to genuinely ensure that we are doing the best we can to meet their needs.
- Michael Barthman
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