Amputee victims in Haiti receive physical therapy from volunteer therapist but tracking of these patients becomes nearly impossible.
On a Tuesday in March, Mary Anne Kramer-Urner punched “PT Haiti amputee” into an Internet search engine. Three days later she was on her way to the Rehabilitation Clinic at Albert Schweitzer Hospital in Deschappelles, Haiti, as a representative of Physicians for Peace. A California physical therapist who became expert in amputee care working at a Veterans Affairs hospital, she had been reading about the number of amputees following Haiti’s devastating January earthquake. Kramer-Urner immediately sent her resume to the Norfolk-based group that trains medical personnel in countries around the world. “We’re not a relief organization,” emphasizes PFP spokesperson Mary Westbrook, though she concedes there are plenty of hands-on projects. “‘Send, train, heal,’ is what we do. They were doing a lot of clinical work, but also training.”