Celebration for Haiti Volunteers

By Cheryl L. Reed

More than 40 employees who treated Haitian earthquake victims and the Medical Center staff who supported their efforts were honored in a Haitian-themed ceremony June 8 at the Duchossois Center for Advanced Medicine (DCAM). Everett Vokes, MD, interim dean of the Biological Sciences Division and Pritzker School of Medicine, and interim chief executive officer of the Medical Center, presented awards and announced that medical volunteers will continue to travel to Haiti as a result of a $100,000 gift from an anonymous foundation.

Carolyn Wilson, RN, chief operating officer; Olufunmilayo Milayo, MD, FACP, associate dean for global health; and Christopher 'Sola Olopade, MD, clinical director of the Global Health Initiative, also were part of the ceremony that awarded certificates and pins to those who volunteered in Haiti and to the Medical Center staff members who helped plan and execute that effort.

Vokes announced that the Medical Center had contributed more than 1,500 hours of administration time to the Haiti volunteer effort, costing about $85,000 in personnel expense. Medical volunteers cared for 2,000 inpatients and performed 300 major surgeries and 1,500 minor procedures. In addition to underwriting the salaries of Medical Center personnel, the hospital donated more than $250,000 in equipment, medical supplies, immunization supplies and travel expenses. Thirty-seven Medical Center personnel were sent to Haiti, either to the Fond Parisien field hospital or to Port-au-Prince hospitals, between February and May. The Medical Center also raised more than $50,000 in charity donations, which it, in turn, matched.

“These are incredible statistics and they speak to the idealism shared at this medical institution,” Vokes told the crowd, which gathered in the fourth floor atrium of DCAM. “We should be incredibly proud of this effort. As dean, I want to thank all of you.”
haiti ceremony one
Photos by David Christopher

Left to right: Yadira Martell, RN; Shelly Porcellino; Olufunmilayo Olopade, MD, FACP; Brian Callender, MD; Christopher 'Sola Olopade, MD; Dima Awad, PharmD. Medical volunteers who went to Haiti to care for earthquake victims enjoy a Haitian-themed celebration with Olufunmilayo and Christopher 'Sola Olopade, both of whom directed the Haiti volunteer project.

 haiti ceremony two
 Left to right: Karen Arndt, RN; Mike Sorensen; Christie Babcock, MD; Olufunmilayo Olopade, MD, FACP

 haiti ceremony three
Volunteers who served either at the Medical Center's field hospital in Fond Parisien or in Port-au-Prince staffing hospitals and mobile clinics were awarded with certificates and pins for their service by Olufunmilayo Olopade, MD, FACP, associate dean for global health (center); Christopher 'Sola Olopade, MD, clinical director of the Global Health Initiative (far right); and Carolyn Wilson, RN, chief operating officer (right, in yellow), all of whom spearheaded the Haiti project.
Haiti Volunteers

Deployed to Fond Parisien:

Christian Theodosis, MD
Rex Haydon, MD
Richard Cook, MD
Elvire LaPlanche, RN
Nicole Muse, RN
Dima Awad, PharmD
Chrissy Babcock, MD
Keegan Checkett, MD
Kris Alden, MD
Sean Clancy, OT
Diane Davis, PT
Walter Flores, RN
Marie LaFontant, RN
Elizabeth Mouw, PharmD
Vivian Liese
Marshall Segal, MD, JD
Michael Sorensen
John Kress, MD
Chris Sullivan, MD
Karen Arndt, RN
Karen Wilson, RN
Megan McDonald, PT
Catherine Kennedy, PT
Cheryl Reed
Melanie Plumley, RN
Sabine Cadeau
Jimin Kim
Melodie Kinet
Nada Williamsom, RN
Yadira Martell, RN (also deployed to Port-au-Prince)

Deployed to Port-au-Prince

Heather Costello, MD
Steve Schrantz, MD
Brian Callender, MD
Mark Haseman, RN
Kathy Luba, MD
Nilam Soni, MD
Daniel Johnson, MD

Michael Millis, MD
Nicholas O’Hearn, RN
Carolyn Wilson, RN       
Funmi Olopade, MD
Jeffrey Finesilver
Joyce Keldsen
John Easton
Angela Smyth, MD
Mohan Gundeti, MD
Gregory Bales, MD