Education : Fellowship training of Haitian physician

Fellowship training in Haiti

Summary:

The goal of the project is to train Haitian neurosurgeons to provide for the needs of the Haitian people. Project Medishare and the Global Institute of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine (UMMSM), will establish in collaboration with the MSPP, and the State University of Haiti an advanced training program in neurosurgery for selected Haitian general surgeons. The program will initially recruit a fellow every year for this three year training program. After completion of their fellowship, these neurosurgeons will be assigned to the major hospitals throughout the country where the need for neurosurgical procedures are important. The neurosurgery fellowship is fully recognized by the Haitian health authorities.

Goals:

To provide 24/7-neurosurgical coverage at the only trauma and critical care hospital in Haiti using volunteers from US/Canada including neurosurgeons, neurosurgical fellows and senior level residents.
To educate and mentor a Haitian Neurosurgical resident (a fully trained general surgeon) on basic neurosurgical principles through formal didactic sessions and in-hospital practical apprenticeships. Since this is the only trauma center in the country, the majority of neurosurgical cases in the country will present to the hospital with an opportunity for real-time hands-on teaching.
To train and equip a corps of the brightest Haitian trauma surgeons to handle basic brain trauma in an emergency setting.
To facilitate the development of a Haitian neurosurgical education and training program for and by Haitians.

How to Help:

Currently, we are recruiting fully trained neurosurgeons who are willing to travel down to Haiti for one-week at a time at our local hospital Bernard-Mevs Hospital, starting in March 2017. Lodging, board, and in-country transportation will be covered by Project Medishare. The volunteer is responsible for travel to and from the Port au Prince, Haiti. Please submit your contact information below.

Background:

Currently Haiti has very few formally trained neurosurgeons for a population of 10.3 million inhabitants. Most, if not all, of these neurosurgeons practice in Port-au-Prince. There is no structured neurosurgical care service outside of Port-au-Prince. With the current size of the population the country would need 10 to 15 neurosurgeons well distributed in the country to provide neurosurgical care to the larger population centers.
Many factors have contributed during the past 3 decades in exacerbating the need for neurosurgical care in the country. The population growth and the accelerated migration toward major cities as well as the expanding motorization of lifestyle have increased the number of patients requiring neurosurgical care including the patients with traumatic injuries of the nervous system.
Formal training in neurosurgery is currently not available in Haiti. Although there are limited international training opportunities for Haitian surgeons interested in specializing in neurosurgery, those providing care in Haiti currently have had limited mentored operative training and work with only basic instruments, equipment and supplies. Access to neurosurgical care in emergency situations such as traumatic brain and spinal injury as well as for congenital disorders , degenerative diseases and tumors of the nervous system is therefore very limited. Trauma is one of the most common causes of death in young people (15-40 years of age) and treatable congenital anomalies (such as hydrocephalus) are a common cause of reversible neurologic disability and death in young children. This lack of available neurosurgical care, particularly for trauma and congenital anomalies, deprives individuals of their health and society of their productivity.

Project Medishare for Haiti, Inc., a 501©3 non-profit registered in the State of Florida, was founded in 1994 by Dr.’s Barth Green and Arthur Fournier from the University of Miami School of Medicine. It is an organization dedicated to sharing its human and technical resources with its Haitian partners in the quest to achieve quality healthcare and develop services for all. This mission is accomplished in several ways:
A continuing commitment to rural communities by establishing and funding sustainable programs; training of Haitian physicians, nurses and allied health professionals’; and providing technology, supplies and equipment to our clinic in Thomonde and other affiliated programs throughout Haiti.

Project Medishare also provides support for the training of family doctors in Cap-Haitien. This successful program has been established by the Haiti Project of the Department of Family Medicine, a close partner of Project Medishare, in collaboration with the MOH of Haiti and the medical school of the State University of Haiti.

Medishare also fostered the development of visiting surgical specialty programs in general surgery, plastic surgery, urology and pediatric neurosurgery. The pediatric neurosurgery program has offered assessments for hundreds of children and operative care for over 1000 children since 2003. Over the years, an effort has been made to involve Haitian surgical and pediatric residents in the assessment, operative and post-operative management of the children. The periodic trips separated by many months made consistent involvement and education for the Haitian trainees sporadic and inconsistent.

Since the January 2010 earthquake, Project Medishare has continuously supported, staffed and operated a hospital in Port-au-Prince. This field hospital has functioned as a true tertiary care facility, providing care (unavailable elsewhere) and taking referrals from other hospital across Haiti. The initial field hospital on the airport grounds has moved to the Bernard Mevs Hospital and Clinic and is still staffed by North American volunteers on a rotating basis as well as full time Haitian staff. The hospital is fully equipped with a CT, multiple operating rooms, medical/surgical ICU beds and pediatrics wards. Continuity for the children treated at the Project Medishare affiliated facility is provided by two full time Haitian nurses and surgical house officers. Many of PM volunteers come from academic medical centers and their presence in Haiti creates an opportunity to train Haitian medical, pediatric and surgical residents and medical students as well as nurses and allied health care providers. In particular the presence of rotating neurosurgeons creates the unique opportunity to offer training in basic neurosurgery.

For more information, please contact info@projectmedishare.org