November/December 2003

Catholic Health Initiatives Provides Life-saving Generator to Hospital in Baghdad

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Maryanne Pierre, OP, a hospital engineer and Father Khalil Jaar with the new generator provided by Catholic Health Initiatives through the Catholic Consortium for International Health Services.

As a member of the Catholic Consortium for International Health Services, Catholic Health Initiatives has used donations from market-based organizations, employees and a participating congregation to purchase a generator for St. Raphael Hospital in Baghdad, Iraq.

"This generator was badly needed because the supply of electricity in Baghdad is not stable. Patients on respirators, including infants, were dying when the electricity shut off without warning," said Peggy Egan, OSF, Ph.D., vice president of mission and healthy communities for Catholic Health Initiatives. "A wonderful Jesuit priest, Father Khalil Jaar, contacted St. Raphael for us and learned that a generator was first on its list of needs."

Father Jaar, who lives in Jordan, arranged to purchase the $27,000 generator and transport it to St. Raphael, along with a large supply of powdered milk and baby food. Maryanne Pierre, OP, administrative supervisor at the hospital, wrote a letter of thanks to Sister Peggy. "We wish to thank you and all who participate in your charitable help," she wrote. "We are deeply grateful. Without your help, it was difficult to assist patients in ourhospital becauseof the lack of electricity."

Catholic Health Initiatives employees and the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati donated nearly $40,000 to help St. Raphael Hospital. The money remaining after the purchase of the generator will be used to help the Consortium purchase an ambulance and medical supplies for the hospital. "St Raphael shares what the Consortium provides with another Dominican hospital in Baghdad, as well as a Franciscan-run clinic and an orphanage," said Sister Peggy. "Everyone who donated should know that their contributions are making a very realdifference for those who are suffering in Iraq. I’d like to give a huge thank you to all who contributed to meeting this need."