PALATKA, FL – Recently an international gesture of goodwill, peace and health left Putnam County on its way to a place 8312 miles away named Chikwawa, Malawi. The package was a box of medical supplies containing the both the basics such as bandages and rubber gloves and more sophisticated instruments. The destination was Chikwawa District Hospital, a hospital of an estimated 200 beds with very little else in the definition of healthcare facilities, as we think of them here in Palatka. The average income of Chikwawa is $2.00 per day and there is only one ambulance in the area. The town of Chikwawa sits on the Shire river between 2 conservation areas, but has no running water in many of their facilities.
The package was sent by the Medical Staff of Putnam Community Medical Center Inc. thanks to the organization efforts of Dr. John Gaines. The Medical Staff of Putnam Community Medical Center, Inc is a 501c3 organized by the medical staff community of physicians serving PCMC and has partnered with the Medical Center, hospital administration and staff to collect the supplies for these drives.
As part of their vision for the 501C3 The Medical Staff of Putnam Community Medical Center, inc states: We will establish a legacy giving program, and elevate the status and visibility of the medical community by demonstrating charity and good will.
This particular shipment was the latest in a series that began a few months back during the summer of 2018 and is intended to continue on a monthly basis. Dr. Gaines described the contents as everything from gloves and instruments to teabags, so that not only immediate healthcare needs were met, but also sanitation could improve healthcare in the far away community "upstream" of the emergency care situations. The package will take approximately 10 days to arrive at its destination.
"Our local physicians are generous and caring individuals and we're proud to have them serving our hospital and patients." Mark Dooley, CEO Putnam Community Medical Center, "We're always glad when we can partner to serve our community with them and this was an extra opportunity to reach folks outside of Putnam County in a positive way."