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  • rural and marginalized women including right here in the U S Chelsea introduced Genette and said Many of the critical investments that have helped ensure that women and girls are leading longer healthier lives have been made in skilled birth attendants and midwives Midwives just like Genette Thelusmond of Midwives For Haiti whose remarkable care has helped generations of Haitians be born safely and to grow up healthy and to themselves give birth to healthy children Genette then spoke along with a translator about her training and work as a midwife in Haiti the country with the highest maternal and infant mortality rates in the Western Hemisphere Before an audience of 1 000 and a live online worldwide stream she said Too many children do not survive to take their first breaths or just as tragic their mothers do not live to hear their baby s first cries But I believe we can change this story In fact it already is changing With every new midwife I help educate we have the chance to save and improve the lives of hundreds even thousands more mothers and children each year See Genette s speech here the maternal health segment begins at 13 30 Genette was one of our first students She had already been a nurse for some time and had spent her childhood attending births with her mother a traditional birth attendant in the countryside She says I saw firsthand how dangerous because of lack of resources and training childbirth could be for poor women She worked hard in her course and did extremely well Her commitment and natural aptitude were obvious and we invited her to become an instructor to our future students She also teaches traditional birth attendants like her mother in our Matròn Outreach Program Genette is

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/entry/midwives-for-haiti-takes-new-york.html?tmpl=component&print=1&format=print (2016-04-29)
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  • month They received 4 of the bags The other two bags went to Illa and Juslene the two midwives that Rebecca trained last summer to do thorough assessments of mothers and babies before they leave the hospital here in Hinche Putting the bags in the hands of midwives seemed to bring Mary Breckenridge s vision back to us and I really wanted to get a picture of a Haitan baby in one of those bags We had a professional photographer here for just a few days and the morning before he left we asked him if he could help us get that photo BD Colen said he would do it so we showed him the Frontier picture We decided that for various reasons going to the hospital to take photos was not wise or practical and that bringing a woman and her baby to us was reasonable as we could provide the vehicle to bring them to the house We called Illa and Juslene and asked if there was anyone ready to go home that would consent to coming here and having their baby s photo taken They called back soon and said Yes come and get the mother and baby When they arrived at the house and Illa helped the very young mother out of the van she said to us She s a little embarrassed to come because she has no clothes The grandmother was carrying the baby while the mother climbed out of the van holding onto a brown towel wrapped around her body She had a green blouse on and that towel nothing else And she was reluctant to sit because of course having just had a baby the back of the towel was bloody Haitian women frequently come to the hospital with the only nice outfit they have get the dress or nightgown or skirt soiled during the birth process put the soiled things in a bucket to take home and wait for family members to bring them something to wear home on the back of the motorcycle They use multiple rags in their limited supply of underwear to keep themselves from soiling everything the lie on or sit on These rags do not get tossed No they get taken home to get washed in a bucket to be cleaned and dried and reused over and over This mama s skirt was in a bucket back at the hospital We have a house full of women and all of us swung into action Kelah Hatcher the daughter of a CPM volunteer offered a pair of underwear and in that we put a blue surgical towel for padding I went upstairs to my still unpacked bags and found a blue and white shift I had bought and because sending it back when it was too small seemed to be more bother than it was worth had brought to give to someone We sent her to the bathroom with the panties and dress She walked out looking

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/entry/the-baby-in-the-bag-by-nadene-brunk-cnm-and-founder.html?tmpl=component&print=1&format=print (2016-04-29)
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  • this care many mothers and newborns died needlessly In July 2014 in partnership with Hospital Ste Therese Midwives for Haiti launched the Postnatal Care Program Two skilled birth attendants were selected and thoroughly trained patient sheets were drafted and logbooks were created From the first day data was collected Six days a week the midwives work from 8am 4pm They see as many patients as they can on the hospital floor and at an out patient clinic two days a week Within three months these two midwives have provided care to 894 women and infants increasing access to postnatal care at the hospital from 1 to 65 If you ask Juslene or Illa the Postnatal Care Team they will tell you countless stories of women who narrowly avoided dying from preeclampsia or who were kept several days longer in the hospital because of anemia or an infection They will tell you how much time they spend with mothers to dispel the cultural belief that they don t nurse well the first few days after delivery They make sure mothers are educated about the benefits of colostrum and how important it is nurse frequently They will tell you about the newborns they have referred for special care or treated for infection They will tell you how many mothers come back before their 1 week follow up appointment because they now know that a high temperature of their baby or themselves is a danger sign They will not only tell you these stories with pride in their voice but they will show you Follow them on their rounds and they will introduce you to the woman who they discovered hemorrhaging alone on her bed hours after she delivered They will show you the mom and baby who are finally nursing well They

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/entry/saving-lives-providing-respectful-postnatal-care-to-mothers-and-newborns-in-haiti.html?tmpl=component&print=1&format=print (2016-04-29)
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  • classroom instructing But I did have an excellent Haitian translator who is fluent in French and English and we became a dynamic duo in the classroom shooting all three languages around The large dry erase board got covered daily in notes and diagrams for the students initially spelled in French but gradually changed to Creole as the weeks went on and my language and spelling improved dramatically I prepared every night pulling research off the internet outlining my notes deciding on audiovisual classroom aids I thrived I grew I was happy every day in the classroom because wonderful discovery that it was we have the BEST students These women have big hearts and big spirits Some of them have uprooted themselves from their families including husbands and children to come to the Central Plateau and live in single rooms or crowd in with relatives to learn the theory and skills of caring for women through their childbearing years They are unable to return home for months roads are poor transportation to rural areas is difficult and money for travel is nonexistent for most One local student feeds her nursing baby all night long since she is unable to be with her all day She still manages to study her best and get to class and clinical rotations each day There is no one for whom coming to school here is not a hardship and there is no one who is not prepared to give us everything she has to make it through a demanding rigorous year And it is demanding They have learned the hormonal control of the menstrual cycle and fertility when there is not even a Creole word for hormone I pull medical French from my brain and they learn every foreign concept They come to understand internal

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/entry/it-all-begins-with-the-students.html?tmpl=component&print=1&format=print (2016-04-29)
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  • maternal health
    rutted roads rivers and streams to reach the women who would otherwise not have access to care The team sets up in churches schools community buildings or sometimes under a tree and gets to work while expecting and newly delivered mothers wait patiently for the health care they know will make a difference for themselves and their babies surviving childbirth or not Every Haitian mother knows a woman who has died from pregnancy or birth complications Magdala Jean a graduate of Midwives For Haiti who now works on the mobile clinic says Too many women are dying in birth My cousin died because of eclampsia a treatable complication I want women to have loving care and support In Haiti the focus is on survival and hope that mother and baby will live through the many complications that are brought on by poor nutrition malaria worms early hypertension lack of prenatal care lack of transportation and a lack of skilled birth attendants By bringing comprehensive prenatal and postnatal care to rural women by skilled compassionate providers all graduates of Midwives For Haiti s training program the Mobile Prenatal Clinic closes a critical gap in care for very poor women This care includes providing vitamins and iron supplements maternal and fetal health assessment lab testing and treatment for anemia worms malaria sexually transmitted infections and referrals for HIV Mothers also receive extensive education on the importance of nutrition breastfeeding danger signs of pregnancy and when to seek help Every woman receives a chart and her health is followed throughout her pregnancy Very ill mothers receive emergency transport to a medical facility The project is working The Mobile Prenatal Clinic provides over 6 000 patient visits annually Last year alone the midwives transported 25 mothers for life saving emergency medical care For the rural women of these 20 remote villages the care these traveling midwives provide can literally mean the difference between life and death We know how to end preventable deaths of rural mothers and babies We know that it costs money to bring maternal care to these women It costs 10 per patient visit to run these clinics in rural Haiti With solutions like this it is no longer a question of how but why When we hear the statistic that 800 mothers die each day while bringing life into the world we must remember that it is mostly rural poor women who are dying And we need to ask ourselves are the lives of these women worth saving Midwives For Haiti has answered with a resounding Yes Midwives For Haiti relies on private donations to keep the Mobile Prenatal Clinic on the road all year round Make a tax deductible donation by May 29 to help them earn a matching grant and cover the annual cost of this life saving project Each dollar donated will be matched please give now Tags mobile clinic maternal health haiti mothers everynewborn 0 Continue reading 2845 Hits 0 Comments May 11 Each Day in Haiti by Emily Tinsley RN MSNed Midwives For Haiti From Our Volunteers As an experienced international educator of nurses in the developing world I began my journey with Midwives for Haiti for the first time 2 weeks ago Though I am not a midwife and my experience with mothers and infants is narrow my abiding passion remains deeply in the provision of meticulous basic nursing care and education in ambiguous environments Midwives for Haiti spoke to my passion and gave me the courage to offer my humble support My extensive experience in such environments was enough to keep me from having any expectations or personal agendas for this trip I was only certain that I would observe learn and position myself wherever and in whatever fashion that I be most helpful To my delight I was offered the opportunity to join efforts with Cindy Seigel an experienced practitioner and educator of Midwifery Though our paths had only recently crossed in brief circumstances it quickly became apparent that our connection was bound by respect and camaraderie Each and every day was filled with an abundance of memorable moments sites and personal connections Our anticipated first day of acclimation and cultural integration transformed as rapidly as one can change out of church clothes and into scrubs A rapid shift in plans came with news that several nurses had not shown up for work at the hospital Without question or debate we were headed to work Within minutes of waving farewell and thank you to our taxi drivers we were directed to the postpartum ward where an eclamptic mother lay unconscious with her limp newborn boy Mother and baby were surrounded by several worried family members earnestly waiting for anything to alter the bleak reality before them My mind instantly focused on the clinical tasks at hand and potential outcomes We did not have oxygen suction IV S or a NICU doctor readily available if at all We did however have our eyes ears hands and instincts to maneuver through the rawness of a family s devastation Skin to skin Cindy gently advised Upon bringing this infant to his mother s bare breast I searched for breath movement and even just a dribble of colostrum I remembered the family asking for all that could be done to save the two lives before them In respect of their wishes yet in personal conflict with possible unfavorable outcome from resuscitating a 28 week old infant in this environment I began chest compressions The perceived hours blurred in the minutes it took for a heart rate to go from 30 to 120 Wrapped in a shirt the baby was then carried away to a newly available bed in the pediatric ward where 8 other children were under the care of one nurse The mother steadily improved with fluids medication and diligent nursing care Each day Cindy and I observed this mother s progression from being unresponsive to drinking eating sitting up and to smiling Each day Cindy and I noted this infant s progression from near death to stability feedings and most recently his discharge home with mom Each day we admired the rooted strength and perseverance of Haiti s people The midwives and nurses methodically maneuvered with grace and integrity through all the daily trials As we were witness to so many similar clinical circumstances I marveled at the artistry of shared human interactions learning experiences and improvisational execution of care in its purest sense Recognizing such engagement each day I was filled with an incredible feeling of hope for a sustainable presence and future of Midwives for Haiti Tags maternal health haiti newborn nurse nurses week 0 Continue reading 1652 Hits 0 Comments Mar 18 No Ceilings For Midwives For Haiti Midwives For Haiti From Our Staff On March 9 2015 our fabulous midwife and instructor Genette Thelusmond was invited to New York City by the Clinton Foundation to present a speech on maternal health at the launch of No Ceilings Not There Yet A Data Driven Analysis of Gender Equality Our Directors Nadene Brunk and Dr Steve Eads along with fellow midwife Magdala Jean accompanied Genette It was a fabulous honor and exciting event Genette shared the stage with Hillary Clinton Chelsea Clinton Melinda Gates and a dozen or so other amazing women and men including the Honorable Presidents of Croatia and Liberia along with Nobel Prize winner Malala Yousafzai via Skype to bring 20 years of data to life Maternal health was the first data point explored Over the past two decades maternal mortality has decreased by 40 across the world Chelsea Clinton said But we can t mistake progress for success Despite those gains progress has been uneven particularly among poor rural and marginalized women including right here in the U S Chelsea introduced Genette and said Many of the critical investments that have helped ensure that women and girls are leading longer healthier lives have been made in skilled birth attendants and midwives Midwives just like Genette Thelusmond of Midwives For Haiti whose remarkable care has helped generations of Haitians be born safely and to grow up healthy and to themselves give birth to healthy children Genette then spoke along with a translator about her training and work as a midwife in Haiti the country with the highest maternal and infant mortality rates in the Western Hemisphere Before an audience of 1 000 and a live online worldwide stream she said Too many children do not survive to take their first breaths or just as tragic their mothers do not live to hear their baby s first cries But I believe we can change this story In fact it already is changing With every new midwife I help educate we have the chance to save and improve the lives of hundreds even thousands more mothers and children each year See Genette s speech here the maternal health segment begins at 13 30 Genette was one of our first students She had already been a nurse for some time and had spent her childhood attending births with her mother a traditional birth attendant in the countryside She says I saw firsthand how dangerous because of lack of resources and training childbirth could be for poor women She worked hard in her course and did extremely well Her commitment and natural aptitude were obvious and we invited her to become an instructor to our future students She also teaches traditional birth attendants like her mother in our Matròn Outreach Program Genette is the epitome of a strong woman and wonderful highly skilled midwife Simply put to know her is to love her Also equally true to know her is to be in awe of her Magdala pictured above right was also one of our first students Married to a pastor and mother to sixteen children twelve are orphans she has worked on the Mobile Prenatal Clinic since day one Though she was not going to speak we wanted Magdala to join us so that she could see how much we and the world value the work she does for the women and families in Haiti Former President Bill Clinton thanked them both for their hard work to reduce maternal and infant mortality in Haiti To say that we are proud of these two women and all of our graduates is a profound understatement Being included in this dialogue about gender equality the progress and the work still to be done was an extraordinary honor We are humbled and grateful Tags maternal health haiti midwives everynewborn NoCeilings 0 Continue reading 2417 Hits 0 Comments Feb 12 The Baby in the Bag By Nadene Brunk CNM and Founder Midwives For Haiti From Our Staff Three weeks ago Rebecca Barlow and I wanted to recreate Frontier Nursing s baby in the bag photo in Haiti For those of you unfamiliar with the story in the 1920 s to the 1960 s Mary Breckinridge established the Frontier Nursing Service in south eastern Kentucky Small clinics and nursing posts were built in areas where there were no roads Eventually they were able to refer to a small hospital nearby rather than putting people on boats mules and horses to get to a train to take them to Lexington The clinics were staffed by nurse midwives who traveled by horseback and in addition to catching babies they stitched wounds gave vaccinations and brought healing to the sick in the region Because the nurse midwives always carried their supplies in a leather saddlebag that contained their starched white aprons clean sheets sterile instruments cord ties and gloves the children of the region came to believe that all babies arrived in these bags Sometimes they wondered why the babies stayed in there so long after the midwife arrived FNU s Baby in the Saddlebag picture Rebecca is a current Frontier Midwifery student and I am a graduate from Class 08 Right now in the house here in Hinche Haiti we have midwives Kathleen Lutter and Susan Mitchell from classes 84 and 85 respectively Nurse midwives frequently see how our mobile prenatal clinics operate here in rural Haiti and draw the lines of similarities mostly in bringing skilled care to where the people live between Midwives For Haiti and the work of the nurse midwives in the mountains of rural Kentucky Last year a colleague of mine from my nursing faculty days Violet Horst contacted me She had found some old leather bags at the University of Virginia s nursing school that were probably used to carry supplies for public health nurses years ago They needed to be cleaned up and the handles needed repaired A kind harness maker from Dayton Virginia fixed them for her for no charge Then she mailed them to Midwives For Haiti in Richmond Virginia She also fund raised for BP cuffs fetoscopes and other midwifery equipment to put into them When they arrived in Haiti they were given to our mobile clinic midwives Four of them ride our aging pink Jeep to sixteen villages around the central as far away as a 2 hour drive delivering skilled midwifery care to over 500 women each month They received 4 of the bags The other two bags went to Illa and Juslene the two midwives that Rebecca trained last summer to do thorough assessments of mothers and babies before they leave the hospital here in Hinche Putting the bags in the hands of midwives seemed to bring Mary Breckenridge s vision back to us and I really wanted to get a picture of a Haitan baby in one of those bags We had a professional photographer here for just a few days and the morning before he left we asked him if he could help us get that photo BD Colen said he would do it so we showed him the Frontier picture We decided that for various reasons going to the hospital to take photos was not wise or practical and that bringing a woman and her baby to us was reasonable as we could provide the vehicle to bring them to the house We called Illa and Juslene and asked if there was anyone ready to go home that would consent to coming here and having their baby s photo taken They called back soon and said Yes come and get the mother and baby When they arrived at the house and Illa helped the very young mother out of the van she said to us She s a little embarrassed to come because she has no clothes The grandmother was carrying the baby while the mother climbed out of the van holding onto a brown towel wrapped around her body She had a green blouse on and that towel nothing else And she was reluctant to sit because of course having just had a baby the back of the towel was bloody Haitian women frequently come to the hospital with the only nice outfit they have get the dress or nightgown or skirt soiled during the birth process put the soiled things in a bucket to take home and wait for family members to bring them something to wear home on the back of the motorcycle They use multiple rags in their limited supply of underwear to keep themselves from soiling everything the lie on or sit on These rags do not get tossed No they get taken home to get washed in a bucket to be cleaned and dried and reused over and over This mama s skirt was in a bucket back at the hospital We have a house full of women and all of us swung into action Kelah Hatcher the daughter of a CPM volunteer offered a pair of underwear and in that we put a blue surgical towel for padding I went upstairs to my still unpacked bags and found a blue and white shift I had bought and because sending it back when it was too small seemed to be more bother than it was worth had brought to give to someone We sent her to the bathroom with the panties and dress She walked out looking regal with a shy smile Because she also looked tired and uncomfortable we hurried to get our photos BD worked with lighting and settings in the house Rebecca kept the baby wrapped well and the little boy just slept through it all We got one photo with Illa and the baby and many of just the baby in the bag Although Emily said all the volunteer donated baby supplies had been depleted we scrounged in all of our storage rooms and managed to find one cloth diaper one onsie a pink cotton receiving blanket a blue sheet a plastic bag for the dirty towel another clean towel and a baby toy I had brought from my granddaughter The grandmother is pictured here with the Hospital Albert Schweitzer bag we found to put it all in It included a few goudes to pay for a mototaxi ride home when she was discharged In the end the pictures were taken and the mother and her grandmother taken back to the hospital to get some last instructions and teaching by Illa before going home In the end I was left thinking more about this mother than I thought about the photo shoot I thought of the home she was taking this baby to its dirt floor its lack of running water electricity its meager food supply I thought about the baby s grandmother wanting to help so much but not having much but herself to offer I thought about how much I love my grandchildren and want them to be happy and loved and safe I have also thought about Violet Horst who is a woman who is one of the 3 of people who survive a gleoblastoma a dreadful brain tumor for more than a year I thought of all the love and grace she has brought to her students while teaching pediatric nursing and how her love reached all the way to midwives and mothers in Haiti while she wears electrodes attached all over her head to beat back the growth of the tumor In the beginning it was about a picture of a baby in a bag In the end it was about women loving and supporting each other through the treacherous roads we travel In the end there was so much love in the house it was spilling out and we would never be the same In the end we were more inspired than ever to carry on Mary Breckinridge s vision Nadene Brunk CNM and Founder of Midwives For Haiti Tags maternal health haiti midwives frontier nursing university rural 0 Continue reading 5482 Hits 0 Comments Nov 20 Saving Lives Providing Respectful Postnatal Care to Mothers and Newborns in Haiti Midwives For Haiti From Our Staff Women need skilled care before during and after delivery In developing countries like Haiti postnatal care programs are often the weakest of all reproductive and child health programs Lack of postnatal care contributes up to half of all preventable maternal and newborn deaths Hospital Ste Therese is the public referral hospital in the Central Plateau About two hundred women give birth here monthly and in 2013 only 1 received postnatal care Without the resources or funding to provide this care many mothers and newborns died needlessly In July 2014 in partnership with Hospital Ste Therese Midwives for Haiti launched the Postnatal Care Program Two skilled birth attendants were selected and thoroughly trained patient sheets were drafted and logbooks were created From the first day data was collected Six days a week the midwives work from 8am 4pm They see as many patients as they can on the hospital floor and at an out patient clinic two days a week Within three months these two midwives have provided care to 894 women and infants increasing access to postnatal care at the hospital from 1 to 65 If you ask Juslene or Illa the Postnatal Care Team they will tell you countless stories of women who narrowly avoided dying from preeclampsia or who were kept several days longer in the hospital because of anemia or an infection They will tell you how much time they spend with mothers to dispel the cultural belief that they don t nurse well the first few days after delivery They make sure mothers are educated about the benefits of colostrum and how important it is nurse frequently They will tell you about the newborns they have referred for special care or treated for infection They will tell you how many mothers come back before their 1 week follow up appointment because they now know that a high temperature of their baby or themselves is a danger sign They will not only tell you these stories with pride in their voice but they will show you Follow them on their rounds and they will introduce you to the woman who they discovered hemorrhaging alone on her bed hours after she delivered They will show you the mom and baby who are finally nursing well They will show you the free prescriptions they are writing for vitamins and pain medication They will show you the logbook 63 pages long filled top to bottom with the patients they have seen in the past few months The success of this program has deepened our conviction and inspired us so greatly that we have dedicated a fundraising campaign to expand it We want all mothers and newborns at Hospital Ste Therese to receive postnatal care We are determined to end preventable maternal and infant deaths in Haiti And we appreciate your support Tags maternal health haiti breastfeeding everynewborn projectpostnatal 0 Continue reading 8038 Hits 0 Comments Nov 06 It All Begins With the Students Midwives For Haiti From Our Staff By Patti Lee I lived for five months in Hinche Haiti working with Midwives For Haiti I was co teaching with a Haitian nurse midwife in their small school that trains Skilled Birth Attendants in a 12 month course of midwifery study I am not an instructor I am a clinical nurse midwife with a homebirth practice I have done volunteer work for Midwives For Haiti during the past four years and I admire and believe in the organization so when I learned there was a need for an American teacher who spoke French I decided to take on the challenge for the first semester As always in Haiti I was going to be the one who was so blessed by this endeavor Seventeen women from 20 to mid 40s sat around long tables in front of me Some of them looked alert and interested some maybe bored and at least one looked tired Some of their names were unusual to me Would I learn who they were Would I learn their personalities Would they accept me a foreigner I am an animated speaker using my hands and facial expressions are part of my communication style I haven t observed this in Haiti so would I be well understood It was a bit of a surprise the first day to discover that fewer than half of the students spoke French the classes would have to be taught in Haitian Creole I have poor conversational Creole language skills and no language skills for higher education classroom instructing But I did have an excellent Haitian translator who is fluent in French and English and we became a dynamic duo in the classroom shooting all three languages around The large dry erase board got covered daily in notes and diagrams for the students initially spelled in French but gradually changed to Creole as the weeks went on and my language and spelling improved dramatically I prepared every night pulling research off the internet outlining my notes deciding on audiovisual classroom aids I thrived I grew I was happy every day in the classroom because wonderful discovery that it was we have the BEST students These women have big hearts and big spirits Some of them have uprooted themselves from their families including husbands and children to come to the Central Plateau and live in single rooms or crowd in with relatives to learn the theory and skills of caring for women through their childbearing years They are unable to return home for months roads are poor transportation to rural areas is difficult and money for travel is nonexistent for most One local student feeds her nursing baby all night long since she is unable to be with her all day She still manages to study her best and get to class and clinical rotations each day There is no one for whom coming to school here is not a hardship and there is no one who is not prepared to give us everything she has to make it through a demanding rigorous year And it is demanding They have learned the hormonal control of the menstrual cycle and fertility when there is not even a Creole word for hormone I pull medical French from my brain and they learn every foreign concept They come to understand internal and external anatomy and the physiology behind conception and fetal development without ever having heard most of the words or concepts before in their lives They learn it they understand it they give it back to me They discover what it means to give care they learn how to observe ask listen formulate ideas using critical thinking develop and act on plans They learn hand skills community change agent skills health care educator skills professional role skills They learn to communicate with male physicians in a culture still revering the doctor right or wrong and still placing men above women in importance They learn basic science and details they learn virus bacteria fungus protozoans when all they had before were microbes at best and germs at least They learn medicine the difficult details of eclampsia hemorrhage infection They learn pharmacy the drugs they will use in their practice We demand this rigor they study hours on end They make me feel proud to teach them I am in awe of each one And the result Our graduated students run mobile prenatal clinics in 20 remote rural locations They skillfully deliver thousands of babies a year in Haiti They provide thousands of prenatal postpartum and newborn exams They provide family planning services They attend monthly continuing education as best they can manage They feed their families they elevate the status of women they keep their sisters alive and well through pregnancy and childbirth in the country with the worst statistics for maternal mortality in the western hemisphere But first they were our students Tags maternal health education women midwives skilled birth attendant 0 Continue reading 2590 Hits 0 Comments Sep 23 Why Skilled Birth Attendants Matter by Nadene Brunk Midwives For Haiti Uncategorized I ve been working in Haiti for about a decade to reduce maternal and infant mortality by increasing access to skilled maternity care Skilled attendance is a proven intervention to reduce preventable maternal and newborn deaths In Haiti only about 25 of women have access to a skilled attendant during their delivery Many don t have access to prenatal or postpartum care both of which are so important to reduce complications and ensure safe motherhood and a healthy beginning for newborns Childbirth anywhere in the world will always pose a risk Prenatal and postpartum care and delivering with a skilled birth attendant mitigates that risk But there are complications that can arise with even the healthiest mothers who have had the best prenatal care 10 things that can happen to any woman during birth regardless of race wealth medical history or location in this world 1 The baby may not breathe on it s own after birth This happens about one percent of the time and is more frequent if the baby is premature or has been exposed to certain medications But it can happen to anyone It kills about a million babies each year in this world 2 A piece of the placenta remains in the uterus This only happens about 4 of the time but can be a cause of heavy bleeding and can happen to anyone 3 The uterus can bleed too much after birth by not contracting well on its own It is more common if a piece of the placenta remained inside but it can happen to anyone even if the placenta was completely expelled 4 The baby s shoulders can get stuck in the pelvic bones This is more common with big babies but can also happen to anyone 5 The baby s cord could prolapse or come out in front of the head It is more common when the bag of water is broken artificially but it can happen to anyone 6 You can get an infection In even the cleanest of situations there are bacteria that you can be exposed to during birth 7 The baby could be stressed by the labor and not get enough oxygen This is more common if the placenta is not healthy but can happen with even healthy placentas 8 The baby could be in a position that makes it difficult to exit the pelvis well and labor could go very long 9 The uterus could invert turn inside out while the baby is coming out It is pretty rare but sometimes happens to women who have had a lot of babies 10 The placenta could be retained and not come out at all This may be because of conditions where it grows into the wall of the uterus or just will not detach on its own for some reason These complications can happen to anyone anytime and anywhere in the world Whether one chooses to birth at home at a birth center or in a hospital having a skilled birth attendant has been proven to make the difference between life and death for mothers and babies However if you are a woman in a rural village in the 72 countries of this world and do not have a skilled attendant equipped to respond to these emergencies here s what can happen in those ten situations 1 The baby could die 2 You could bleed to death 3 You could bleed to death 4 The baby could die 5 The baby could die 6 You could die 7 The baby could die 8 Your labor could be so long you and your baby could die 9 You could bleed to death 10 You could bleed to death So every two minutes in this world a woman is dying from preventable causes related to pregnancy or childbirth 99 of these deaths occur in developing countries And the babies more die on the first day of their life than at any other time At least 114 died in the hour I wrote this the majority from preventable causes that a skilled midwife could have prevented Christy Turlington Burns is a model global maternal health advocate and founder of the maternal health organization Every Mother Counts After a perfectly normal natural birth in a state of the art birth center next to a hospital in New York she had a post partum hemorrhage PPH Her situation required rapid intervention by the midwife and doctor who were caring for her to keep her from bleeding to death Soon after she educated herself on PPH and realized that if she had not had immediate access to care she would have died Christy knows why skilled care at birth matters She became passionate about helping more women have access to skilled care in even the most impoverished situations She knows why Midwives For Haiti is training skilled birth attendants and that these men and women are making a tremendous impact in their communities We are grateful for all of you who know too Tags maternal health birth 0 Continue reading 12532 Hits 0 Comments Sep 03 Sweat Dirt and Love By Tara Elrod Midwives For Haiti From Our Volunteers The following is an excerpt from the blog of midwife volunteer Tara Elrod and her husband Dr Glen Elrod Today was our first day of work Glen went to the hospital to help the Haitian OBs and midwives wherever needed and I went on a mobile clinic to a town about an hour outside of Hinche The mobile clinic goes to this particular location once a month This enables the women and babies in this particular area to have access to quality care once a month when before Midwives For Haiti came here most went without Without transportation and expendable money to be used on a tap tap women simply could not reach a doctor or midwife The new Midwives for Haiti Landcruiser which we donated toward We arrived to find that the house and church which was to be used as the mobile clinic site was locked up with no way to access it Women and babies had already lined up waiting on our arrival and anticipating to be seen Something so trivial as having no access to the building was not going to make us skip a beat These women and babies needed to be seen A couple midwives walked around the property and found a wooden picnic bench This would be where the women would sit and wait for their turn to be seen There was a permanent cement table placed in the center of the shaded veranda where the midwives would then make a makeshift pharmacy and urine dipping station Meanwhile someone set up the portable exam table that we had brought along with us A backpack strapped to my back a doppler on my waistband stethoscope around my neck I placed my measuring tape doppler gel and blood pressure cuff on the exam table to make my exam room A basic set up with minimal supplies out in the middle of nowhere Haiti and we were equipped to save a life by way of preventative care education and screening This is where we hosted our clinic My exam room The morning proved to be uneventful I went from woman to woman sitting on the wooden bench and took each woman s blood pressure I was honestly astounded by the beauty of each reading 105 60 110 60 I m not sure I had seen such great normal blood pressures during our last trip I made it a point to tell each of these women how great their blood pressure was how their baby palpated head down how wonderfully and completely normal they were measuring Throughout the late morning patients a young boy would come up to me eagerly searching for conversation in his broken English Allo what is your name he asked me My name is Tara I told him How old are you He answered that he was 15 How old are YOU he asked me I smiled at that I m 30 I thought about it more and laughed Ha I m twice your age 15x2 He laughed with me at that I was puzzled at his presence Why are you here Obviously you are not pregnant He laughed at this He responded saying I am here to be a guest Okaaaay I wondered why in the world a 15 year old boy would come here to hang out to watch pregnant women and busy midwives meander around in the hot sun as if it were entertaining Very puzzling to me but I shrugged and went about my business smiling at the oddity The mild morning warmth quickly stretched into the blazing afternoon and the steady stream of patients became just a few remaining One of the last remaining patients got up on the exam table Bonjou My name is Tara I m a midwife

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/tags/maternal-health.html?limitstart=0 (2016-04-29)
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  • able to spend time in the maternity ward He also visited the community of Cabestor where we will be opening our first rural birth center this fall and photographed some of the families who will deliver their babies with the assistance of our graduates and a fully stocked birth center B D also accompanied the mobile clinic midwives as they traveled to remote villages to provide prenatal and postnatal care to some of Haiti s poorest and most vulnerable women Follow him on Twitter at TheBDColen to see more images and explore his work on SocialDocumentary net Learn more about what we do why we do it and how you can help First born St Therese Hospital Hinche Haiti Now Midwives4Haiti Haiti women MaternalHealth pic twitter com 8fvEwT62Gz B D Colen TheBDColen August 16 2015 In labor St Terese s Hospital Hinche Haiti Midwives4Haiti haiti womenshealth maternalhealth childbirth pic twitter com O4Lj9mxazP B D Colen TheBDColen August 16 2015 Contemplating baby 9 Hinche Haiti Midwives4Haiti haiti maternalhealth childbirth midwives pic twitter com yk8yBt2quZ B D Colen TheBDColen August 16 2015 New life St Terese s Hospital Hinche Haiti Midwives4Haiti haiti deliveringthenextgeneration maternalhealth pic twitter com MvA79YXAXi B D Colen TheBDColen

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/entry/b-d-colen-documents-maternal-and-infant-health-in-haiti.html?tmpl=component&print=1&format=print (2016-04-29)
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  • haiti
    unbearable tragedy This story Carrie s story for me and for some of us as it is even unfolding this week includes service determination and persistence and humility with a spirit to seek after God Three simple chapters All teaching chapters each with a fresh page being turned before my eyes each day as designed by God for me and for you Some years ago while seeking to find an opportunity to serve during her spring break she showed me a rather blurred photo of a group of boys in Haiti Dad she says this orphanage might need me Carrie I said I can t believe it but I think the tall guy in the photo is a patient of mine Harry and he s been trying to get me to go to Haiti to do eye projects but I ve never been interested A bit later Dad that is Harry in the photo YOU HAVE TO GO And said with the clarity that only a determined redhead could have said it And so it was an undeniable providential moment and off we went a couple of months later on an an eye project to Haiti and before my eyes I watched a young woman inspire me to serve And this was just the beginning of her ongoing lesson to me in chapter one service Trips back to Haiti to Bolivia Honduras and more VMI is no easy trek and most especially for a woman Nor is track or pole vaulting or being an S2 captain Running a half marathon or training for the marathon or pursuing the Marine Corps doubtful very easy So never underestimate the persistence and determination of your daughter or son This is chapter two from Carrie persistence and determination When we would run our 10ks together she d double back after her blistering run and jog the last mile or so with me coaching gently encouraging Dad you can do it pick up the pace a bit how do you feel steady now and she d let me finish first so I d feel a bit better about it all I suspect I will be reading this chapter over and over again the rest of my life persistence determination And I hope you ll read this chapter along with me and thank Carrie for it Some of you have seen her journal entries Some of you were fortunate to share the barracks at VMI Some of you were up close and personal with her in Haiti or at Impact Makers her current workplace or shared the dance floor or the running track The prevailing theme humility an ever radiant smile and a desire to serve God where she could serve her best This chapter three humility and spiritual pursuit is a chapter also meant for me This sometimes arrogant and stubborn physician prone to selfishness and anger is going to read this chapter over and over again humility and spiritual pursuit In our loss Carrie has given me three simple chapters to read over and over again Service Determination and Persistence Humility and A Heart to seek after God Her legacy as big as it is will carry on I could never have dreamed of a better gift Thank you Tags haiti Carrie Wortham 0 Continue reading 1798 Hits 0 Comments Sep 17 Spotlight New Staff at Hospital Ste Therese Guillet Enelus Midwives For Haiti From Our Staff To ensure access to 24 7 maternity care at Hospital Ste Therese the public referral hospital in the Central Plateau of Haiti Midwives For Haiti recently hired two new staff members taking our total paid staff at the hospital to 16 The following interview is with Guillet Enelus skilled attendant and graduate of our training program Guillet what does it mean to be a midwife in Haiti In Haiti when you say someone is a midwife that comes with a great responsibility In helping to give life midwives are called to help pregnant women and babies Midwives should always be there for their patients in good times and in bad times What is your greatest hope My greatest hope is that I will never become discouraged with any patient whether rich or poor I hope I can give them the help and care that they need What are you hoping for in your new job With my new job I hope that I can be a good midwife for all patients and that I ll collaborate well with the other midwives I owe them respect and they owe me respect too Guillet s annual salary of 4160 was generously sponsored by ACNM affiliate North Carolina nurse midwives To sponsor all or part of a salary please contact Summer at saronson midwivesforhaiti org Tags midwife maternal health haiti newborn hospital 0 Continue reading 891 Hits 0 Comments Sep 09 Spotlight Adeline Timay Class 8 SBA Student Midwives For Haiti News from Haiti The lovelyAdeline Timoy one of 30 students in our new Class 8 recently shared a bit more about herself and her path to our program Highlighting these amazing women and men the future change makers of maternal and infant health in Haiti is one of our greatest joys Where are you from I come from Dèsarmes in the Verrettes commune near St Marc What were you doing before you started class at Midwives for Haiti I knew how to do births in the community where I lived The clinic didn t do deliveries anymore but we had a little building where we always did births I worked with Breath of Life Haiti Why did you come to the class at Midwives for Haiti I wanted to get more experience in the domain of childbirth and midwifery What do you like about the class so far I like that it is already increasing my knowledge and understanding I like that the program is giving me more capacity to do good work in my community What are you going to do when you finish here After I finish I will go work in the Dèsarmes community The n if there is urgent need for midwives in other more remote areas I will go with a mobile clinic When did you decide to become a midwife I decided when there was a complication with a woman in labor with twins I realized I needed more knowledge and skill to handle that kind of birth Tags maternal health haiti birth midwives nurse 0 Continue reading 1238 Hits 0 Comments Sep 08 Rest In Peace Carrie We love you Midwives For Haiti From Our Staff On Saturday September 5 th Midwives For Haiti lost one of our most beloved members Carrie Wortham was taken from us when she was struck by a car while riding her bike in Hanover County Virginia Carrie was 26 years old For 2 years Carrie devoted herself to our mission first as our in country volunteer coordinator and then as our Virginia based administrative assistant When she moved on to another job she did not forget about Midwives For Haiti but remained connected to us as a special advisor We continued to benefit from Carrie s intelligence ingenuity and compassion Those of us who knew Carrie find it difficult to believe she is gone But I know her contributions to the education of Haitian midwives and the care of women and babies in Haiti live on 26 years is not very long but for Carrie it was long enough to make a difference to this world Carrie was like family to us She was also sister to our Administrative Director Sci Clements pictured together in Haiti above We loved her dearly We know that many in our community knew and also loved Carrie If you d like to send cards to her family please address as follows and we will deliver The Family of Carrie Wortham c o Midwives For Haiti 7130 Glen Forest Dr Suite 101 Richmond VA 23226 You can also sign this group e card by this Friday Sept 11 and include a note and picture if you wish In lieu of gifts Carrie s family has requested donations be made in her honor to our work in Haiti If you d like to make an online donation in her memory here is the link and please write Carrie s name in the notes Yours Stephen Eads MD Friend of Carrie s Medical Director Midwives For Haiti Tags haiti Carrie Wortham 0 Continue reading 2743 Hits 0 Comments Aug 31 And they re off Midwives For Haiti News from Haiti Our 30 new students in Class 8 began their 12 month intensive course in advanced obstetrics at the end of August We typically only have funding for 15 16 students a year but these 30 nurses selected from over 150 applicants were so strong and ready that we accepted them all Every Mother Counts generously agreed to support our increased class size the program is free to our students Upon completion of the training program which was developed to meet World Health Organization standards students will become skilled birth attendants and ready for employment at hospitals birth center and mobile clinics throughout Haiti Several of the students already have jobs waiting for them upon graduation mostly in rural locations where their new skills are desperately needed Our new group kicked off their program with three days of orientation During this time they learned more about Midwives For Haiti our history and our mission to increase access to skilled care in Haiti and the journey they are embarking on Students met their teachers and their fellow classmates and many fast friendships have already developed Each student has a blue and white uniform for the classroom pink scrubs for their hospital work a book bag with two textbooks writing materials and a water bottle They ve also received fanny packs with fetoscopes gestational wheels measuring tapes and blood pressure cuffs the essential midwifery tools Classes have begun and due to the class size we divided the group and will be rotating them between didactic and clinical teaching It is a rigorous education program with high standards and they will have to work very hard At the core of our midwifery curriculum is not only the skills proven to save the lives of mothers and infants but providing compassionate and respectful care This education to become skilled birth attendants will challenge and inspire each woman and man in this group and we re confident that they will be forever changed by the experience These 30 students will one day become the maternal and infant health heroes for their communities and our beloved Haiti As our Founder and Executive Director Nadene Brunk said They are a truly beautiful group Tags maternal health haiti education midwifery students 0 Continue reading 1036 Hits 0 Comments Aug 26 Spotlight New Preceptor For Class 8 Esthère Louis Midwives For Haiti From Our Staff To accommodate our doubled class size this year we hired another preceptor Esthère Louis The 30 students who began classes this week will rotate between the classroom and their clinical lessons We sat down with Esthère as she prepared to welcome Class 8 What does it mean to be a midwife in Haiti As a midwife you are there so that you can help patients in need need being dangers for moms and for babies You re there to save them What is your greatest hope In general I hope that the school can have the capacity take on more students and for Nadene to get more students because the school is very important It means that many women who would ve died will not die We want to reduce maternal mortality What are you hoping for in your new job I would like for my work to be fruitful so we preceptors can share our knowledge with the students and then when they are graduated and move on to jobs of their own they can take their knowledge and respect for patients with them We will do everything we can to help them understand everything we know so that when they graduate they can do great work so everyone congratulates them on their work and so that Nadene is very proud of them and the work they are doing I would love to thank everyone so much for the support they give the school and I want to ask for them to always think of us Even though life can become difficult and expensive we hope they will always think of us Tags midwife maternal health haiti education skilled birth attendant 0 Continue reading 914 Hits 0 Comments Aug 20 B D Colen Documents Maternal and Infant Health in Haiti Midwives For Haiti News from Haiti We ve had a special guest with us this week in Haiti the documentary photographer MIT instructor Pulitzer winning journalist and our friend B D Colen B D has been photographing the real life reality of maternal and infant health in the Central Plateau of Haiti and how our programs work to empower Haitians to deliver their next generation This is B D s second trip with us but the first where he was able to spend time in the maternity ward He also visited the community of Cabestor where we will be opening our first rural birth center this fall and photographed some of the families who will deliver their babies with the assistance of our graduates and a fully stocked birth center B D also accompanied the mobile clinic midwives as they traveled to remote villages to provide prenatal and postnatal care to some of Haiti s poorest and most vulnerable women Follow him on Twitter at TheBDColen to see more images and explore his work on SocialDocumentary net Learn more about what we do why we do it and how you can help First born St Therese Hospital Hinche Haiti Now Midwives4Haiti Haiti women MaternalHealth pic twitter com 8fvEwT62Gz B D Colen TheBDColen August 16 2015 In labor St Terese s Hospital Hinche Haiti Midwives4Haiti haiti womenshealth maternalhealth childbirth pic twitter com O4Lj9mxazP B D Colen TheBDColen August 16 2015 Contemplating baby 9 Hinche Haiti Midwives4Haiti haiti maternalhealth childbirth midwives pic twitter com yk8yBt2quZ B D Colen TheBDColen August 16 2015 New life St Terese s Hospital Hinche Haiti Midwives4Haiti haiti deliveringthenextgeneration maternalhealth pic twitter com MvA79YXAXi B D Colen TheBDColen August 16 2015 Number nine Midwives4Haiti maternalhealth haiti womenshealth women poverty pic twitter com pq7A9lVBH3 B D Colen TheBDColen August 17 2015 28 7 months pregnant w no 7 Haiti womenshealth MaternalHealth Midwives4Haiti socdoctweets socialgoodmoms pic twitter com 2Hqf2OSnoP B D Colen TheBDColen August 18 2015 Family Capstor Haiti Haiti MaternalHealth womenshealth Midwives4Haiti socdoctweets socialgoodmoms pic twitter com Ki4khUCeFz B D Colen TheBDColen August 18 2015 Children Capstor Haiti Haiti MaternalHealth womenshealth children Midwives4Haiti socdoctweets Medishare4Haiti pic twitter com jvsCIRXqHY B D Colen TheBDColen August 18 2015 Tags haiti birth midwives skilled birth attendant photography 0 Continue reading 2278 Hits 0 Comments Jun 30 Holy Moments by Vanessa Fowlkes FNP Midwives For Haiti From Our Volunteers I always get asked Why do you go to Haiti Sometimes it s an easy answer and other times I m asking myself the same question In the weeks leading up to a trip when I m juggling work trip coordination med ordering booking flights making sure everybody knows what they need fundraising and my sanity it can be easy to forget what motivates me to make this trip Even as I arrive at the busy Port au Prince airport with all my anxiety around getting through customs with the meds with the tension of passing through the throng of people trying to help me with my luggage with the fear that the staff person from Midwives for Haiti won t be there to greet me the question swirls in my travel weary brain Why do you do this to yourself The answer always comes at some point during the trip in the form of an encounter that will be both very non American this doesn t happen back home and pure Haitian in its beauty Over the years I ve come to think of these encounters as holy moments On this trip there was lots of good stuff but the moment actually occurred on our 3 rd day of mobile clinic We were doing an impromptu clinic in a church because the river we would cross to get to our planned destination was too high This happens a lot in Haiti so doing clinics by a river or under a tree in a pasture are unplanned glitches that I have grown to look forward to At the end of this particular day when clinic was over I thought I happened to be standing by the river fascinated as I watched people crossing on their horses or motorcycles or just wading through on foot On the opposite bank a middle aged woman approached with an infant bundled in a blanket She waded into the water and headed our way with the infant held high against her chest Mid way across she began speaking to the interpreter that I was standing with and they chatted back and forth for a minute as she completed her crossing and continued up the hill I don t speak the language so I didn t understand the conversation He and I eventually made our way back to the clinic and walked back into the church to find this same woman inside She wanted her grandchild to be seen for the diarrhea the baby was experiencing Diarrhea not an uncommon complaint in worried parents either in Haiti or in the United States Pretty routine right Unbeknownst to us all The Moment had arrived The baby s mother had died suddenly the week before when her daughter was only 3 weeks old All the grandmother knew about the

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/tags/haiti.html?limitstart=0 (2016-04-29)
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  • I would have something long to wear I treated most of my clothes with Permethrin and packed them in plastic bags I bought five bottles of deep woods Off as well as Off towelettes that I could keep in my carry on I headed to Haiti as scheduled on July 18th loaded down with lots of donated supplies and a generator part that piqued the interest of TSA And all that DEET When I arrived in PAP I went directly to the bathroom and applied bug repellent via the towelettes I stayed in PAP that night at the Heartline Guesthouse It took me about 20 minutes in the PAP heat to decide there was no way I was going to wear the long clothes I changed into capris and a t shirt and sprayed myself with Off One of the volunteers at the Guesthouse a young man in his early 20s had been in PAP for 4 weeks and did not use bug spray at all He had not gotten Chik V at that point I had to stop myself from going Mommy on him I slathered myself liberally with the Off several times that day and just before I went to bed I slept under a mosquito net with a fan blowing on me The Chik V mosquitoes bite during the day but I wasn t taking chances I took Off to the bathroom when I showered and sprayed the drain and screens before I turned it on I sprayed myself as soon as I dried off and sprayed again when I got dressed so I could get all the cuffs The other volunteer that traveled with me the next day from PAP to Hinche Kel was just as diligent with the bug spray as me I think every Haitian we met had had Chik V Even young people were massaging their wrists and complaining about pain Kel and I decided not to be embarrassed by the amount of spray we used or how often we applied it She used Picaridin while I continued to use Off several times daily and at bedtime We talked with Emily and Rebecca at the MFH house They had both had it Emily a mild case and Rebecca a more serious case with relapses They talked to us about avoiding mosquitoes when they were most active during sunrise and sunset and using the bug spray and fans We did not actually see many mosquitoes They were most active at sunrise and sunset as we were told We saw the most when we were in Hinche at a continuing education session for the Matròns which was absolutely fabulous We passed our towelettes back and forth throughout the session All in all I do not think I was bit at all I was so hyper vigilant I think I identified any redness or itchiness as a mosquito bite But I came back to Georgia whelp free I thought I would leave my extra Off with

    Original URL path: https://www.midwivesforhaiti.org/easyblog/entry/traveling-to-haiti-during-the-mosquito-season-and-chik-v.html?tmpl=component&print=1&format=print (2016-04-29)
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  •