Partners in Health
Growing up in Florida, Paul Farmer took a job picking citrus where he learned firsthand about the bitter conditions Haitian migrant laborers endured. On his first trip to Haiti, he witnessed the misery of life for the poor. Instead of being overwhelmed by what he observed, Paul set out to prove that cost-effective, high-quality health care could be delivered in the most hopeless of contexts. He founded Partners in Health (PIH) and started working in Haiti in 1987. In addition to building a community-based health care system, he forged an academic and medical discipline around the concept of global health equity and created the Program in Infectious Disease and Social Change at Harvard Medical School. In 1993, Paul received a MacArthur Award and developed an advocacy and teaching branch of PIH with the award money. He is inspiring a new generation of practitioners in health and social justice.
IMPACT AS OF MAY 2013:
- On April 28, 2013, PIH opened the Hôpital Universitaire de Mirebalais in Haiti, a 205,000-square foot, 300-bed facility. After the January 12, 2010, earthquake devastated Haiti’s largest public teaching hospital, nursing school, and other critical medical infrastructure in Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s Ministry of Health asked PIH to dramatically scale up its existing plans for a small community hospital there.
- They provide lifesaving medical care to a population of 2.4 million people worldwide in 12 countries. They employ at least 2,422 medical staff, 8,301 community health workers and 3,805 non-medical staff.
- In Rwanda alone, there were 660,137 patient visits, 37 health centers supported, 19,759 babies delivered in health facilities and 554 secondary students who received tuition coverage from PIH in collaboration with the Rwandan Government.
- In Lesotho, a new 2012 study confirms PIH’s success rates are among the world’s best for multidrug-resistant tuberculosis – the country’s first-ever treatment program for MDR-TB. With its World Food Program, PIH is also providing nutritional support for HIV and TB patients, pregnant women, malnourished children and others who show clinical signs of malnutrition.
- In 2012, PIH began a pilot project to strengthen services for pregnant women. The health center, in consultation with the villages, trained 100 Maternal Health Workers (MHWs). In 2011, nearly 2,000 pregnant women in rural Lesotho received prenatal care through PIH.
- In 2012, PIH and Riders for Health announced they will work together to strengthen health care coverage in the Neno District of Malawi. Riders will manage a portion of PIH’s vehicles, allowing PIH to focus its resources on the District’s two hospitals and 11 health centers, which serve 110,000.
- In 2012, they vaccinated an entire flood-prone rural commune, while a local partner vaccinated an urban slum population (total of 100,000 people).
- PIH has begun replication of its model in six countries on four continents. Numerous programs worldwide access PIH’s training materials and receive technical support from PIH’s clinical and program staff.
SEE THEIR WORK IN ACTION: