Bishop Joseph M. Sullivan Center For Health Opens In Haiti
The Catholic Medical Mission Board (CMMB) – Healthier Lives Worldwide is opening a new health center in Côtes-de-Fer in southeast Haiti, which will serve more than 50,000 community members who previously did not have access to quality healthcare. A dedication took place yesterday.
The Bishop Joseph M. Sullivan Center for Health is the only hospital in the isolated, impoverished community of Côtes-de-Fer, and will serve a population that previously had to travel for hours over rough terrain to reach the closest health center.
The hospital will offer deliveries and surgeries; antenatal, postnatal and pediatric care; pharmacy services; and a place to receive emergency care. The health center was opened in partnership with Mercy Health, a Catholic healthcare system serving Ohio and Kentucky. Mercy Health was the lead funder for the hospital, providing a $2 million challenge grant for its construction.
The hospital is a component of CMMB’s Children and Mothers Partnership (CHAMPS) in Côtes-de-Fer, an initiative that builds partnerships to collectively achieve sustainable change in local health systems. The hospital is opening with support from Haiti’s Ministry of Public Health and Population (Ministère de la Santé Publique et de la Population), which will provide technical and support staff, and the community of Côtes‐de‐Fer, who donated the land to CMMB on which the hospital now sits. A guesthouse, attached to the hospital, will house volunteers who provide specialty services and trainings to help build the capacity of the local Haitian staff.
Groundbreaking for the hospital occurred in February 2015. During Hurricane Matthew in October of 2016, the hospital’s main building sheltered 40 residents whose homes had been destroyed. The first patient was seen shortly thereafter.
Over the next 10 years, dental and ophthalmology facilities will be added to the hospital, in addition to a community center and staff housing. The community center will act as a resource for community members and staff to facilitate access to health information, and serve as a training institution for Haitian physicians and nurses.