Being very familiar with the medical health system in both Haiti and the Dominican Republic, I can tell you they are not equipped to handle the kind of devastation brought on by Tuesday's 7.0 magnitude earthquake. There is a significant deficiency in trained medical personnel as well as the assistance of hospital beds and intensive care units in this poor Caribbean nation. For these reasons, this earthquake could turn out to be one of the most devastating natural disasters of the the 21st century.
In cases of earthquake where you have destruction of property, most of the injuries are traumatic in nature during the first phase of the disaster. Some of the injuries people are suffering include broken bones, lacerations, severe head wounds, crushed limbs and internal organs and hypovolemic shock. All of these injuries require emergency care within hours, which unfortunately, is something that medical professionals in Haiti are not able to provide themselves.
As we try to ascertain the current statistics of these injuries, at least on a broad spectrum, we can assume that thousands of people are perishing as we speak. I will try to keep you abreast of the latest facts, and will do my best to persuade all of you reading this to help the people of Haiti through the proper, credentialed agencies as soon as possible. The American Red Cross is currently accepting donations through their International Response Fund.
In the meantime, please keep the people of Haiti in your thoughts and prayers.