Wednesday, March 10, 2010

We Lost Three Babies Before Midnight

From Toni Brayer, M.D.

“The Sutter team is hoping our efforts make a small difference but we are all aware of how huge the problem is.

Above you can see the ICU tent (tent 'L'). We admitted a 48-year-old woman who had a stroke involving her entire right side. Her daughter told us that the family fell from the fifth floor of a building during the earthquake. Her father and other family members died. One of the children in the family broke his leg – they couldn't believe they actually survived. They are living in the street and now this.

Hearing story after story like that and experiencing the sadness with these people up close brings us all to tears daily. All you can do is wipe away your tears, start IVs and try to practice first world medicine in an impoverished developing country.

Caring for the children is especially tough. You can see the pediatric ward above. The pediatrician team lost three babies before midnight. They are so resilient and each of us had had to come to terms with our own sadness.

Because of a daylight curfew our work shift has been extended. It makes for a long day and challenges our ability to debrief as a team. We also need to rest so we can take care of patients and guard our time to sleep like gold.

We send our greetings to the folks at home who are reading this blog.”


  1. My sister, Grace, is an RN with the team there, and with such a difficult environment there, both logistically and emotionally, I hope you guys are finding support and comfort in each other, as I'm sure you are, while you perform your amazing, back breaking, admirable selfless duties. I understand cell phone communications are difficult, so phone calls and text messages are not necessarily getting through, so if possible, please tell Grace that her family loves her and is SO proud of her and her team's work there in Haiti. Thank you for all you are doing.

  2. I appreciate the update. I feel so grateful for what we have after reading the blog. Thank you for making a difference in the lives of Haiti.

  3. I always get goose bumps whenever I read this blog. Thanks for all you do. You are always in my thoughts and prayers.

  4. Your blogs bring tears to my eyes. My prayers are with all of you and the beautiful people of Haiti.

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  6. I am so touched and profoundly grateful for the work that are doing for the people in Haiti. It makes me proud to be a part of the Sutter Health Team, and I wish I could be there with you to help in anyway possible. Just know that you are supported and respected by those of us here. I have no doubt that you are doing the very best that you can in difficult circumstances. God bless, j.

  7. Toni I love you. Your unselfishness is admired. The stories you are telling, should be told on the news. My heart breaks for all the people in Haiti.