Hôpital Sacré Coeur is a full Service, tertiary care medical center and official Haitian referral center. Located in the North region, the hospital serves all of Haiti with advanced specialty treatment.
Before the earthquake in January 2010, Hôpital Sacré Coeur had 73 inpatient beds, an outpatient clinic, full maternity services, a pediatric wing, and a complete laboratory. Besides the medical care facility, a Nutrition Center on the hospital campus provides two free meals daily to malnourished preschoolers. In the aftermath of the tragic earthquake, over 1,000 victims and their families received critical surgical care at Hôpital Sacré Coeur.
This was achieved as a result of the well established infrastructure, highly trained staff and long standing network of volunteers which allowed expansion to a 420 bed hospital in 2 weeks. The US Navy, US Coast Guard and various other hospitals and NGOs sent many of the most critically injured to Hôpital Sacré Coeur because of its capacity and expertise to treat them.
During the recent and on-going cholera epidemic, the hospital established an official Cholera Treatment Center in a matter of days and as of March, 2010, treated over 1,400 cholera patients.
Hôpital Sacré Coeur operates one of the few Prosthetic Laboratories in Haiti, a rare-for-Haiti oxygen generating system that provides the hospital’s ICU and other critical care programs, a neo-natal unit, and advanced communication systems that allow for fast medical consults with leading U.S. medical professionals.
Community Health Services:
Nine public health nurses and thirty three ‘health agents’ serve five ‘communes’ in the Milot region, each with dispensaries, and reach 150,000 people with vaccinations, pre-natal care, basic hygiene and nutrition training , and HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and filariasis treatment. They also train the LPN’s (called ‘auxiliaries’) who staff the dispensaries. There are currently 17 auxiliaries. The department also distributes dry food provided by the World Food Program one time per month to malnourished children, pregnant and breastfeeding mothers, and TB patients. Community Health also provides a full immunization and vaccination program (infant, early childhood, and adult) plus health education programs to outpatients with ongoing conditions (e.g., diabetes).
Other Community Health Services are:
Because Hôpital Sacré Coeur is the only reliable medical provider in the Milot region, it is responsible for providing public health services to the entire region’s population of 225,000. To fulfill this charge, it also operates a Mobile Clinic which has approximately 100-200 patient visits per week. Started in October 2003, the Mobile Clinic serves a large number of the poor and confined in the area who have not been able to take advantage of on-site hospital services because of illness, age, pregnancy coupled with the rough terrain that must be traveled. There are two mobile clinic teams; one consists of a nurse mid-wife and public health nurse that provide pre-natal care and HIV testing and counseling. The other includes a nurse practitioner, family practice resident and health promoter that provide primary care services. The Mobile Clinic teams cover eight sites on a regular schedule for 5-6 hours per day. In 2009, it served 1,231 patients.
In the spring of 2005, the hospital began operating a blood bank, serving patients from area dispensaries and a smaller area hospital. The Red Cross provides the hospital with the necessary equipment, supplies, staff training, and funds required to pay the salary of one technician.
A program to prevent the transmission of HIV/AIDS from mother to child, as well as provide voluntary counseling and testing programs, began in September 2005 in conjunction with the Catholic Medical Mission Board (CMMB). In August 2005, Hôpital Sacre Coeur began participating in the anti-viral treatment program called the AIDS Relief Project to treat entire families affected by HIV/AIDS. Under this grant program (funded by Catholic Relief Services and the CMMB), Hôpital Sacré Coeur’s is serving thousands of individuals. In 2009, 5,735 people received HIV testing and counseling services for HIV/AIDS, 2,315 of those were pregnant mothers. There were 11,632 visits to the Antiretroviral Clinic in 2009.
If they show signs of malnourishment, children visiting the hospital as outpatients are referred to this program by a physician or nurse professional. Each child receives two balanced meals plus nutritional snacks and vitamin supplements. On Fridays, the children are sent home with a small provision for Saturday and Sunday. There are organized games, physical exercise, singing, dancing, and storytelling; children are also toilet trained and coached in proper hygiene. Progress is tracked closely and regularly to prevent any recidivism, and mothers or guardians take part in monthly health education programs. The program serves an average of 23 children per day in the center. Over the past four years more and more children referred are from outside the village of Milot. Approximately 52 children each month receive weekly dry rations of food as they are not able to travel to the nutrition center on a daily basis.
Immunization and Vaccination
The hospital conducts an immunization and vaccination program (infant, early childhood, and adult) plus health education programs for outpatients suffering from specific medical conditions (e.g., diabetes).
How is the organization staffed?
The CRUDEM Foundation, Inc. has two full time employees.
In Haiti, the hospital currently employs 247 people: 215 full-time and 32 part-time. The AIDS Relief project covers the salary of 22 employees, the Department of Health for the North of Haiti covers 5% of the total cost of salaries and the Red Cross pays for the salary of one nurse and one technician for the blood bank. Nonmedical staff number 97. There is a Haitian physician who is the executive director of the hospital and a Haitian obstetrician who is Medical Director.
There are also two full-time internists, two general practitioner, two family practitioners, two full-time and one part-time pediatricians, one part-time and three full-time obstetricians, one part-time ophthalmologist, two part-time surgeons, three anesthetist nurses, three pharmacists, a dentist, psychologist and three full-time residents. There are 90 people on the nursing staff, 78 of whom are full-time, including the nursing services director, 5 nursing services managers, 44 staff nurses, 11 midwives, 9 Public Health nurses, 16 nurse auxiliaries, and 4 nurses’ aids. In addition, the laboratory has a staff of 13 technicians.
The CRUDEM Foundation also recruits medical volunteer teams from the U.S. who travel to Milot at their own expense. These teams help the Haitian medical staff provide both primary and specialty medical care, including surgeries. The hospital hosted 270 medical volunteers and 75 non-medical volunteers in 2009. Between January and September 2010 over 1,700 volunteers had already visited. Not only do the visiting medical teams perform surgeries and treat patients themselves, they also spend a lot of their time teaching and mentoring the Haitian staff.