LIMA — Nurse practitioner Tim Mosher has visited the country of Haiti a total of 13 times, providing medical care to its impoverished citizens with the help of volunteers at St. Rita’s Medical Center. It was through these visits that Mosher realized Haitian citizens are lacking even the most basic medical equipment, including vehicles to transport patients.
With the help of local agencies and St. Rita’s parent company, Mercy Health, Mosher was able to purchase an ambulance for the country, potentially saving the lives of Haitian citizens who otherwise might die from medical complications.
Medical care “is almost nonexistent there,” Mosher said. “They basically have nothing as far as ambulances and EMS trucks, so people would end up going by taxi or in the back of a truck, and they would die on the way there.
“This unit will be able to transport people to the hospital that otherwise never would have been transported.”
The $15,000 vehicle was paid for by Mercy Health, and equipment was provided by St. Rita’s, Spencerville EMS and the United Fire Apparatus Cor. of Cridersville. The Bath Township Fire Department cleaned the vehicle and is housing it until it can be shipped off later this week.
The vehicle will be driven to New Jersey, where it will be picked up and flown to Haiti by the U.S. Air Force, which takes frequent humanitarian aid trips to other countries.
Mosher hopes the addition of an EMS vehicle can contribute to efforts by HERO Client Rescue, a nonprofit agency dedicated to improving emergency medical care in Haiti.
“Part of their effort is to train Haitian paramedics, and give them the tools to do a new EMS service down there,” he said. “The idea is to help Haitians be able to stand up on their own.”
In August, Mosher and 15 other medical professionals will again travel to Haiti to provide medical care. It will be Mosher’s 14th trip to the country within the last five years.
Reach John Bush at 567-242-0456 or on Twitter @bush_lima.