After Hurricane Dorian, AdventHealth, Orlando Health doctors fly to the Bahamas to help
Sept. 10, 2019
Dr. Alric Simmonds panned his camera at a row of pink, blue and white buildings, their roofs and windows ripped from them, their manicured lawns wiped out and replaced by rubble and naked remnants of palm trees, to show what remained of a hotel on Treasure Cay beach on Abaco Islands.
“Devastating," he said.
Simmonds, vice president and chief medical officer of AdventHealth East Orlando, and a team of surgeons, emergency medicine physicians and engineers traveled to the Abaco Islands last weekend to help with the relief efforts.
They took medical supplies, helped the people who had taken shelter in a clinic, and began to work with the local authorities to find out where help was needed.
“If we can leave the Bahamian people... if we can let them feel that we want to keep them safe, if we can let hem feel that we love them, then I think we’ve done a lot of good to people who are in a bad way right now,” he said in an interview provided by AdventHealth.
Simmonds is among a group of local doctors from AdventHealth and Orlando Health who have started traveling to the Bahamas after the devastation left behind by Hurricane Dorian, which ripped through northern Bahamas, mainly the Abaco and Grand Bahama islands, leaving at least 70,000 people with food and shelter. The death toll continues to rise.
Simmonds is planning to go back to the Bahamas this week to assess the local hospitals and determine how AdventHealth can support rebuilding, according to the health system.
Both health systems have established relief funds for the Bahamas.
Do donate to AdventHealth, visit AdventHealth.com/Bahamas.
To donate to Orlando Health, visit Give.OrlandoHealth.com/HurricaneDorian , or an immediate donation of $10 can be made via phone by texting “RELIEF” to 20222.
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