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Moloney returns from medical relief effort in HaitiFebruary 24, 2010
From Medford Transcript/Wicked Local: Hallmark Health Press Release
Local nurse returns from a week of relief efforts in Haiti
February 23, 2010 10:00 AM
Feb. 12, 2010- Barbara Moloney, RN, a faculty member at the Lawrence Memorial/Regis College Nursing Program, recently returned from earthquake stricken Haiti where she participated in medical relief efforts. The nursing program is part of Hallmark Health System, which also includes Lawrence Memorial Hospital of Medford and Melrose-Wakefield Hospital.
Moloney, a resident of Billerica, spent a week in Haiti caring for the victims of the devastating earthquake that hit the country on Jan. 12. She was part of a dedicated team of volunteers from the United States that cared for patients at Hopital Sacre Coeur, which is located in the village of Milot, approximately 75 miles north of the Haitian capital. This hospital has provided expert healthcare as well as training for physicians and nurses in Haiti for 24 years. Since the earthquake, volunteers have worked with the Haitian staff to care victims airlifted in from Port-au-Prince. What was once a 74-bed hospital now has more than 300 patients.
A critical care nurse by training, Moloney spent her time caring for patients in the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Many of her patients suffered from injuries sustained during building collapses in Port-au-Prince. With devastating crush injuries and necrotic wounds, many had limbs amputated while others suffered from complications including sepsis, a blood stream infection.
Although a few patients succumbed to their injuries, Moloney said she and her colleagues were able to provide comfort and save a lot of lives.
"Thankfully my colleagues and I were able to get to Haiti quickly and begin working," she said. "We all worked together as a team to accomplish what we set out to do and that was save lives."
This was not Moloney’s first trip to Haiti. She has been traveling to the island country twice a year since 2008 as part of a team of nurse educators from the Lawrence Memorial/Regis College Nursing Program. Supported by the Center for the Rural Development of Milot (CRUDEM), the group has been providing ongoing education and training for nurses in Haiti. She had returned to Massachusetts from one of these trips just days before the devastating earthquake hit.
"I immediately wanted to go back when I heard about the earthquake," said Moloney. "I was just dying to get back there to do what I could to help the people of Haiti. I just wept when I saw the news."