Local Solidarity with People of Haiti

Beaver County

Area doctors plan

Haiti mission

By: Bob Bauder
Beaver County Times

Times photo by SALLY MAXSON

Jan 21, 2010 – Dr. Raniah Khairy, left, of Tri-State OB/GYN in Beaver goes through supplies with office manager Kelly LeFebvre. Khairy will take the supplies with her when she leaves for Haiti Sunday as part of a medical relief mission with other Heritage Valley personnel.

Some of the same local organizers of a relief mission to rescue orphans from Haiti are organizing a second trip scheduled for departure on Sunday to deliver medical personnel and supplies to the earthquake ravaged nation.

The plan is to help staff and supply three hospitals in the Port-Au-Prince area, including one set up with the assistance of Dr. Chip Lambert of Sewickley, who specializes in emergency medicine and disaster relief.

Tom Doyle, an emergency room physician at Heritage Valley Sewickley hospital, said organizers will charter an airliner for the trip, and he hopes to fill it with doctors, nurses and other medical personnel. The plane can seat 170.

The most urgent need is for anesthesiologists, orthopedic surgeons, operating room staff and trauma-trained nurses and personnel, he said. Volunteers are asked to spend at least one week in Haiti.

Doyle said military flights leaving Haiti daily are available for the volunteers to return to the United States. However, they might have to find their own way home from military bases in Florida and North Carolina.

Doyle sent a mass e-mail to Heritage Valley employees Wednesday, appealing for volunteers.

He was among the group that transported 53 orphaned children from Haiti to Pittsburgh on Tuesday, but said he won’t be able to participate this time because of his work schedule.

One of the trip organizers is Dr. Jeb Blaugrund of Sewickley, an ear, nose and throat specialist, who also volunteered with the orphans, Doyle said.

He said Sewickley resident James Bouchard, who chartered a plane for the orphan mission, also is paying for this flight. Organizers originally intended to leave for Haiti today, but they have pushed the trip back to Sunday. The plane is scheduled to take off around 2 p.m.

Heritage Valley Health System is donating medical supplies and equipment for the effort, according to spokesman Scott Monit.

One of the volunteers is Dr. Raniah S. Khairy, an obstetrician and gynecologist at Tri-State OB/GYN in Beaver. Khairy said she received Doyle’s e-mail and wanted to help. She admitted that she was a little nervous about going.

“I’m not sure how things are going to be and whether we will be able to do what we need to do,” she said. “I’m sure it’s going to be a life-changing type of experience.”

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