Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Rwanda, Model for Haiti, Says U.N. Envoy

—With a distinguished record of service bringing medical care around the world, Paul Farmer, U.N., deputy special envoy to Haiti, assessed the current delivery of aid to earthquake victims during a brief radio interview broadcast last week:

“Coordination is very difficult, as I’m sure you have seen already. There are so many balkanized, fissured groups trying to do good, that it is very difficult for the government or the U.N. or any organization to coordinate them. And then I said delivery because it seems to me, having worked here a long time, that delivery is always the stumbling point,” he said.

“In the first couple of days, we tried to focus our efforts on trauma, orthopedics, the acute—the needs of people who were injured in the event, in the earthquake. But, now we’re going to have to have rehab medicine, a lot better post-op nursing,” continued Farmer. “But, the real challenge is going to be rebuilding here in Port-au-Prince and further south. And, you are going to have to have a massive rebuilding of public health infrastructure now, hospitals, clinics, health posts. And that’s going to require significant investment of capital, human capital, but it’s going to create lots of jobs, rebuilding safe hospitals and safe schools… we have to also regard that as a chance to create jobs. That’s what’s needed most—jobs.

“Now is a time to rethink public infrastructure, rethink the city. I mean, as you have seen—you can’t have two, three million people living, you know, in such densely packed area,” said Farmer.

When asked about a successful example of the kind of rebuilding he’s prescribed for Haiti, Dr. Farmer had a ready answer: Rwanda, torn by genocide and civil war, now stable and even sending aid to Haiti. Farmer, co-founder of Partners in Health (Haiti), and Inshuti Mu Buzima (Rwanda) is recommending a 10-year rebuilding program for Haiti .

Stand With Haiti

This is part of the February 3, 2010 online edition of Frost Illustrated.

Source: Frostillustrated

No comments:

Post a Comment