Posted 3/06/12 on The Doctor Weighs In
This post was inspired by Kathryn Johnson, Western Regional Council Member of MedShare, a friend, and a most wonderful connector of people.
Today, I drove over to San Leandro, California, the San Francisco Bay Area town where I went to high school. I wasn’t there to reminisce, however. I was there to visit one of the most innovative medical charities in the country, MedShare.
MedShare’s Western Region Executive Director, Chuck Haupt welcomed a small group of visitors to MedShare’s 32,000 square foot West Coast facility by framing the need that the charitable organization is meeting. He showed us a video of the birth and death of a baby born to an HIV positive mom in Lesotho (Southern Africa). The baby was born limp and in respiratory distress. In the US, a newborn like this would have been rushed to the neonatal ICU (NICU), intubated, placed on a respirator and then be expertly cared for by a highly trained medical team, with a NICU nurse devoted just to her. This Lesotho baby was rushed to a nurse already caring for seven other sick babies who were receiving oxygen from a jerry-rigged device that allowed oxygen from a single tank to be shared with other babies in distress. This newborn died because there was not enough tubing to share the O2 with an eighth.
Continue reading “MedShare – Recycling Medical Supplies for the Good of the World”