KNOXVILLE, Tenn., Jan. 18 Remote Area MedicalŪ, a nonprofit volunteer organization that offers free healthcare services in underdeveloped countries and in the U.S., announced today that it will be setting up its RAM operations to assist in the Haiti earthquake relief efforts at the Jimani Project facility in Jimani, Dominican Republic, on the Haitian border. Founder Stan Brock and RAM volunteers loaded more than a ton of medical relief supplies and equipment for Haitian earthquake victims onto RAM's historic C47/DC-3 aircraft on Friday, January 15 at McGhee Tyson Airport in Knoxville, Tenn. The RAM aircraft will ferry supplies and personnel to the Barahona, Dominican Republic airfield. Brock and RAM medical personnel will be traveling back and forth from Barahona to where a small clinic has been set up to assist the victims of the earthquake.
"Due to airport and road closures in Haiti, we had to come up with an alternative plan to land the aircraft loaded with supplies and a small crew of volunteers," said Stan Brock. "RAM's C47/DC-3 originally flew in the Normandy Invasion during WWII more than 60 years ago, and today, it is on a much different, but equally vital mission in Haiti."
The aircraft, piloted by Brock with co-pilot Jim Massengill, landed safely in Santo Domingo on Saturday where Brock and the crew on board connected with RAM's Medical Operations team and headed to the border town of Jimani to begin relief operations. RAM's Medical Operations team assisting in the massive effort includes five emergency medicine physicians and surgeons, a nurse practitioner and three registered nurses.
The Jimani Project (Knoxville, Tenn.) is a nonprofit organization that provides medical assistance to the island of Hispaniola (approximately 30 miles east of Port-au-Prince and road accessible). The medical facility has 16 beds and is currently serving approximately 1,800 patients on site from the Port-Au-Prince region, with patient population growing by the hour. RAM is planning to make multiple flights from Miami with the C47/DC-3 to transport medical cargo and will also be trucking other supplies from its Knoxville headquarters to Miami to fill the pipeline. RAM's mission is being coordinated by Dr. Marc Tinard, a local physician from the Jimani Project.
"As soon as we can sort out the extremely difficult logistical challenges, RAM is planning to take additional medical volunteers to the Jimani Project to continue to address the need for medical services which we anticipate will last at least a year," said Brock. "There is an urgent need right now, however, for anesthesiologists and anesthesia equipment."
Medical volunteers interested in assisting RAM in the Haiti relief efforts, can visit www.ramusa.org for more information. RAM is accepting continued donations to support the Haiti relief efforts, which will help to pay for the aircraft fuel and additional supplies. Individuals interested in making a donation, can visit the RAM Web site at www.ramusa.org and click on the Haiti Relief link. Donors can either donate online or obtain instructions for mailing donations.
About Remote Area Medical
The Remote Area MedicalŪ (RAM) Volunteer Corps is a non-profit, volunteer, airborne relief corps dedicated to serving mankind by providing free healthcare, dental care, eye care, veterinary services, and technical and educational assistance to people in remote areas of the United States and the world. Founded in 1985, RAM is a publicly supported all-volunteer charitable organization. Volunteer doctors, nurses, pilots, veterinarians and support workers participate in expeditions (at their own expense) in some of the world's most remote places. All medical supplies, medicines, facilities and vehicles are donated.
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SOURCE Remote Area Medical