Erismane (Mackenson) Dorelus used to be a teacher here in our school program at Coram Deo several years ago. He is now living in Fond Verettes. Fond Verettes is a mountain village along the Dominican border. Near where his family's home is there is a marker stone. On one side it reads Haiti and on the other Dominican Republic. As a joke we visited the other side of the border stone and the Dominican Republic. We spent some time watching villagers come back from the Dominican side and up the hill with sticks/wood that they would use for their cooking fires and to make charcoal. There are no border crossing guards there and it is an easy access point into the Dominican Republic. In the same way it is an easy access point for Haitian people in search of health care.
The other week Mackenson brought a woman here to Coram Deo who had a "fibrome" (fibroid tumor). She was searching for medical care to get this removed. We brought her to one hospital here in Port-au-Prince but they couldn't help her. Because the family has no relatives here in Port-au-Prince they decided to return back to Fond Verettes. The other day I talked with Mackenson and he said that they would try to enter the Dominican Republic and find medical care there. They will probably just walk down the hill and into the Dominican Republic.
The following article shows how many Haitians cross the border to the Los Mina Maternity Hospital. Until medical care improves in Haiti, the Haitian people will seek help across the border legally or illegally entering the Dominican Republic. Pray that the maternal health care system here in Haiti will improve.
4 HAITIAN BABIES ARE BORN DAILY IN LOS MINA MATERNITY HOSPITAL
Santo Domingo.– Nearly 1,700 babies are born to Haitian mothers each year in Los Mina's San Lorenzo Maternity Hospital, an average of 4 babies a day, the hospital director Gregorio Rivas told reporters today.
According to the figures revealed, so far this year they have had 629 deliveries, 379 C-sections, 5,167 consultations and 1,185 hospitalizations. They have also seen 1,925 Haitians in the ER and nearly 3,223 consulted about birth control.
Rivas said many of the pregnant women live in areas close to the hospital, and others come directly from Haiti, with the added difficulty of not speaking Spanish. “This hinders communication between the women and the health personnel dealing with them,” he added.