Along the remote southern coast of Haiti, a pregnant woman needed rapid medical care. Her blood pressure was too high. This was an emergency situation and she needed to get to a hospital as soon as possible. Fortunately, one of our Haitian Medical Teams was in the right place at the right time to help.
This happened on the day one of our medical teams held clinic in Corail Lamothe, a small village a few miles inland from Haiti’s Caribbean coast. Our medical teams in Haiti hold clinic days on a rotating basis in 16 locations throughout the island nation and Corail Lamothe is one of these spots. It’s remote and lacking in any basic services.
Our team this day consisted of two doctors and two nurses – Drs. Jackenson Davilmar and Kethia Lamour, and nurses Ludnie Janvier and Nathalie Pierre. Haitians all, they provide direct patient care along with our other Haitian Medical Teams to a population of approximately a quarter-million people in the remote and rugged mountains of southeast Haiti.
Preeclampsia is a pregnancy complication characterized by high blood pressure and signs of damage to another organ system, often the kidneys. Left untreated, preeclampsia can lead to serious, even fatal, complications for both the mother and the baby – Mayo Clinic
When the pregnant woman arrived at the clinic, she was full-term, and just about ready to deliver her baby. Our team knew she was in trouble. She had very high blood pressure. A pregnancy disorder called Preeclampsia, without quick treatment, can have dire results for both the mother and child. She needed more care than our team could provide on the spot, she needed to get to a hospital and she needed to get to one quickly. The problem – how to get her there?
The quickest and simplest way to get her to a hospital would be by boat. The rock-strewn roads in this remote area of Haiti are difficult to drive, to say the least, and taking the woman by vehicle could have taken hours and would have been terribly uncomfortable.
One of our Haitian Medical Teams once helped to deliver a baby on the side of a road
Our team loaded the woman into a vehicle and arranged for a boat to meet them on the beach in the town of Belle Anse, about a 40 minute drive from the clinic site. Splitting the cost with the Corail Lamothe Federation, a local community group, we hired a boat and driver to serve as a waterborne ambulance, and accompanied by another nurse, the ailing mother made the roughly 30-mile trip by sea to reach the city of Jacmel and the new Hospital Saint-Michel.
As the photos show – once she reached the hospital the woman gave birth to healthy baby. At last report both are doing well. If it hadn’t been for the quick action by our team, the results may have turned out poorly for both mother and child.