Support for health care has always been an integral part of our mission. We originally supported the community clinic in Boucan Carre. After the construction in 2012 of a large teaching hospital in nearby Mirebalais, we refocused our medical efforts on serving more remote regions. In 2016, after working for five years with the local citizens, we completed construction of a permanent building to house the region’s first clinic in the village of Bouly. Reachable only after a five-hour trek over the mountain, the clinic employs a nurse to provide primary care three days a week, and a doctor who makes the journey to Bouly for three days every other week. Their work is supplemented by medical teams from Knoxville that travel to Bouly and the surrounding villages two to three times each year, treating some 350-400 patients.
With two exam rooms and two dorm rooms, the clinic now has electricity, a gift from volunteers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory who traveled to Bouly to wire the facility. They plan to return in 2019 to install solar panels that will make it possible to store medicines, including vaccines that will reduce the large number of childhood deaths from typhoid, malaria and other tropical diseases. As a result of the generosity of friends and supporters, some 30,000 people in Haiti’s Central Plateau now have access to regular healthcare for the first time.