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Santa Barbara, California & Port-Au-Prince, Haiti, January 7, 2011– On Tuesday, January 11th at 2pm EST, partners who have been engaged in the daily battle to help Haiti recover after the devastating January, 2010 earthquake will hold a press conference call in anticipation of the one year milestone.   Experts from Direct Relief International, FedEx, and Partners in Health will give their assessment of efforts to provide healthcare to Haitians and the challenges facing Haiti’s health system.  They will also speak to the recent cholera epidemic and the ongoing efforts to prevent further outbreaks.

When:               Tuesday, January 11, 2011 at 2pm EST

What:               Media call in advance of the one year anniversary of the earthquake

Who:                President and CEO of Direct Relief International, Thomas Tighe

Partners in Health Deputy Chief of Mission to Haiti, David A. Walton, M.D., M.P.H.,

FedEx Manager of Global Citizenship, Stephanie Butler

Dial:                 (800) 755-6634 (Domestic)

+1 212 271-4657an (International)

Speakers will be calling from the U.S. and Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and will cover the following topics, followed by a media Q&A session:

  • Progress made in the year since the earthquake, and what remains to be done;
  • Overview of the cholera epidemic, and ongoing efforts to prevent further outbreaks;
  • Challenges facing Haiti’s health system and the reliability of essential medical supply-chains;
  • Role of public and private partnerships throughout the ongoing recovery effort, and preparations for future crisis situations.

More about Direct Relief and their collaborative Haiti relief efforts with call participants:

Direct Relief International

Direct Relief International is one of Haiti’s largest suppliers of medical aid, having leveraged $57 million in medical aid last year alone.  To address critical medical needs immediately following the earthquake, Direct Relief International established a state of the art, real time ordering system for health clinics in Haiti to request the exact medical supplies they need at the exact time those supplies are needed.  Direct Relief’s ordering system saves lives by connecting donated medical supplies to current needs, empowers local health clinics to prioritize health services, and reduces waste by only sending requested supplies.


Immediately after the quake, FedEx contacted Direct Relief to lend their logistical and transportation support.  In the week following the hurricane, FedEx provided $50,000 in support of Direct Relief Haiti relief efforts and on January 29, 2010, more than 16 tons of medical material aid departed Direct Relief’s warehouse destined for Port-au-Prince, via donated airlift by FedEx.  The large consignment provided critically needed medicines and medical supplies so Direct Relief’s partners could continue to care for the people injured in the earthquake. The shipment included adult and pediatric antibiotics, analgesics, surgical equipment, and sterile-wound supplies.   In addition, FedEx provided $25,000 in cash to support Direct Relief’s hurricane preparedness program in Haiti.  Medications and supplies from the program were repurposed when the cholera outbreak occurred, and partners were able to utilize module contents to treat the influx of patients.

Partners In Health

Partners In Health is dedicated to providing a preferential option for the poor in health care, and has a long history working with the people of Haiti.  Immediately following the cholera outbreak, Partners In Health (PIH) saw the need to treat an overwhelming number of patients quickly and mobilized supplementary stocks of cholera-appropriate medical supplies to their hospitals.  The first partner they called on after the outbreak was Direct Relief.  Having worked together for years, Partners In Health was confident that Direct Relief would respond quickly, and most importantly, send only specifically requested supplies.  Direct Relief immediately sent five 40 foot containers to support PIH in their efforts to treat cholera.  To date, Direct Relief has provided $4,216,221 (wholesale) in medical materials ($4,191,772 donated, $24,448 procured) to Partners in Health – more than 95 tons of medical supplies.

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