After any sort of disaster, recovery efforts must be carefully planned and coordinated. Sending the wrong kind of assistance can overwhelm an area that is already struggling – a case of inappropriate assistance causing its own kind of damage.
Hurricane Sandy hit the city of Santiago, the second largest city in Cuba, just a few days before reaching the eastern seaboard of the United States. The impact was devastating, and due to the country’s limited resources and the continuing US blockade against it, recovery is difficult.
In our ongoing efforts to help Santiago and the surrounding communities recover from the devastating storm, Global Links is working closely with PAHO (Pan American Health Organization) and MEDICC (Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba) to determine what is essential to hurricane recovery and ongoing healthcare.
Our recent shipment to Gustavo Machin Psychiatric Hospital in Santiago, which had to be evacuated after Sandy, included beds, mattresses, and other medical supplies. A concurrent shipment was filled with beds and medical supplies for distribution to several hospitals and healthcare centers near Santiago.
Much of the medical care in Cuba is provided by a network of primary care centers, so items such as syringes, gloves, and the biomedical equipment necessary for a basic exam are just what is needed.