This week we sent the following letter to our supporters, informing them that the hospital is at a turning point. Your support over the years has strengthened the hospital into what it is today – an institution renowned for its high-quality health care. We hope that you will join us in building a sustainable future for HAS.
Hôpital Albert Schweitzer has had many challenges in its almost 63-year history. We have survived political coups, natural disasters, and financial challenges. We have evolved from an American-, Canadian-, and European-run hospital to one that is almost entirely Haitian-staffed. And, we were sustained in the continuance of our mission after the passing of our founders—Dr. Larry Mellon in 1989 and Mrs. Gwen Grant Mellon in 2000—due to a strong network of donors, alumni and friends, dedicated Board members, and talented staff.
However, HAS is now at a turning point. The rising cost of operations, driven by the tremendous population growth of the region and increasing complexity of accidents and illnesses, has far exceeded our ability to keep pace and cover the cost of care. HAS is at a critical point and we must take immediate action to close an annual budget gap of $2,000,000.
In order to solve this problem, we are putting an increased focus on what we have always done best: Maternal and Child Health. Our vision is to become the leading center for Maternal and Child Health in the Artibonite Region.This health system will consist of pediatrics, high-risk maternity services, general surgery, and three community health centers (two in remote, mountainous areas and one in Deschapelles). We will also continue to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We will need to make significant changes to our operational structure in order to align with this vision, but in the end it will make HAS a strong and viable health care facility for the future.
All of us at HAS realize that this is unsettling news, but we want you to know that we are doing everything we can to ensure the best future for HAS and the Artibonite Valley. Thank you for your continued support, and for continuing to stand with us during this difficult time. Please donate online today. Your gift will not only show that you support HAS but also that you are making an investment in the future of Haitians in the Artibonite Valley.