Physicians and Employees Join Earthquake Relief Efforts

When the desperate need for help and support for the people of Haiti rose after a devastating earthquake, Sanford Health & MeritCare stepped in to help. In January, a team of physicians and support staff left Sioux Falls and headed to the area to aid in relief efforts.

Relief efforts in Haiti
Dr. Ben Levine from Massachusetts and Dr. Geoff Haft evaluate an earthquake victim.

When the desperate need for help and support for the people of Haiti rose after a devastating earthquake, Sanford Health & MeritCare stepped in to help. In January, a team of physicians and support staff left Sioux Falls and headed to the area to aid in relief efforts. The team of physicians and staff organized themselves like a military style operation to bring needed medical services and supplies to the Haiti area.

“This devastation that has impacted the entire world will forever be part of history, and I am truly proud and grateful that our Sanford Health & Meritcare team could impact even just a small part of that history,” said Becky Nelson, Sanford Health & MeritCare Sr. Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.

The Sanford Health & MeritCare team partnered with Children of the Nations International, a reputable organization in the Haiti area with a facility and assets who helped set up operations and assisted with immediate medical attention.

“Our mission was to go down and make a meaningful impact on as many patients as we could. I like to believe we accomplished that,” said Geoffrey Haft, MD with Sanford Clinic Orthopedics & Sports Medicine.

MeritCare also sent a team to the area in February. In addition, Sanford Health & MeritCare established a “Haiti Relief Fund” through the Foundation. Contributions can be made at either the Sanford Health Foundation or MeritCare Foundation. Write “Haiti Medical Relief Effort” on the memo line.