VIDEO SPOTLIGHT: Lovejoy Medical Response Teams Known As ‘Angels of Milot’ In Haiti
By Dr. Jim Palermo, Editor-In Chief // October 30, 2015
CENTRAL FLORIDA HUMANITARIANS
ABOVE VIDEO: Arriving in Milot Haiti four days after the quake of 2000, the Lovejoy team, made up of another surgeon, two nurses and a physician’s assistant, transformed the 73-bed Hospital Sacre Coeur into a 550-bed MASH-like unit, performing more than 180 surgeries, many of them amputations, and treating over 400 injured patients that first week, and performing more than 150 cases, seeing approximately 400-500 patients during a second trip two weeks later.
Dr. John Lovejoy Jr., a retired orthopedic surgeon, had been volunteering through the CRUDEM Foundation at Hospital Sacre Coeur in Milot, Haiti for more than 10 years when Haiti was ravaged by the earthquake of 2010.
Located in the Northern mountains of the country, fortunately Milot was spared the quake’s catastrophic devastation that was seen in the South regions of the country.
“I called as soon as I heard about the earthquake and found out that our hospital was intact,” said Dr. Lovejoy Jr., who then organized a U.S. medical response team, enlisting his son, Dr. John Lovejoy III, at the time an orthopedic surgeon at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington D.C., to help lead the medical relief efforts.
Arriving in Milot four days after the quake, the Lovejoy team, made up of another surgeon, two nurses and a physician’s assistant, transformed the 73-bed Hospital Sacre Coeur into a 550-bed MASH-like unit, performing more than 180 surgeries, many of them amputations, and treating over 400 injured patients that first week, and performing more than 150 cases, seeing approximately 400-500 patients during a second trip two weeks later.
“Despite their enormous tragedy, we sensed the enduring spirit of the Haitian people and their determination to survive,” Dr. Lovejoy Jr. said.
GENERATION OF AMPUTEES
What really got to him in Haiti was seeing all the amputations in children because of delays to immediate medical care.
“The catastrophic impact of the quakes created a generation of amputees in a country where there were zero certified prosthetists,” Dr. Lovejoy Jr. said.
Dedicated to teaching the Haitians how to help themselves, he designed, procured funding for, and built a state of the art prosthetic lab in a 40-foot container, shipped it to the hospital in less than four months after the earthquake, and personally sponsored and funded the training for local Haitian students to become certified prosthetist/orthotists.
The Lovejoys and their teams also planned, designed, and built a physical therapy building and program adjacent to the hospital.
“Today, we have five orthopedic teams that travel to Hospital Sacre Coeur throughout the year with each team comprised of residents, anesthesiologists, operating room nurses, physical therapists, support staff, and more,” Dr. Lovejoy III said.
“The goal is to give the Haitian healthcare community the tools, supplies, and training necessary to provide good medical care to their fellow countrymen.”
Thanks to the Lovejoys’ efforts, Hospital Sacre Coeur is now staffed with a full-time, well-trained orthopedic surgeon who, according to Dr. Lovejoy III, “Has changed the dynamics of care by collaborating closely with the visiting teams, coordinating surgery and treatment schedules, providing expert surgical and follow-up care for his own patients and patients managed by the visiting teams, and ensuring a more steady continuity of care at the hospital.”
In addition to Dr. Lovejoy Jr.’s long-time dedication to the Haitian people, for which he received the 2015 American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery’s Humanitarian Award, he has also frequently travelled to the island of Grenada to upgrade medical equipment, build an arthroscopic system and create an exchange program to bring Grenadian surgeons to the U.S. for training.
BRINGS ORTHOPEDIC EXPERTISE TO BREVARD
Dr. Lovejoy III, who moved to Orlando in early 2014, is a fellowship-trained pediatric orthopedic surgeon at Nemours Children’s Hospital, and adds a sorely needed subspecialty to the ranks of Brevard physicians with a satellite office here in Brevard County.
In addition to his humanitarian work in Haiti over the past five years, he has also dedicated his time and talent to the people of Ramallah, a Palestinian city in the central West Bank.
The Lovejoys say that their propensity to channel their time, talent and treasure into altruistic endeavors can be traced back to the influence of their father and grandfather, John Lovejoy Sr., who, throughout his career working through Crippled Children’s Services, selflessly contributed his time and expertise to benefit the less fortunate.
GOAL: ‘BRING HAITIAN HEALTH CARE INTO 21st CENTURY’
Ever conscious of the need to improve Haiti’s healthcare infrastructure, Dr. Lovejoy Jr. has raised over $500,000 to build three new operating rooms with state-of-the-art equipment and lighting, and add four private rooms to the hospital in Milot.
“My goal is do whatever I can to bring the care we can deliver at Sacre Coeur from the 1940s into the 21st century.”
ABOUT THE 2015 CENTRAL FLORIDA HUMANITARIAN AWARDS
Recognizing Outstanding Individuals & Organizations Who Dedicate Their Time, Talent and Treasure
The 2015 Central Florida Humanitarians include outstanding individuals and organizations from the medical, business, education and governmental communities.
The Central Florida Humanitarian honorees will be recognized during a Gala event on Thursday, Nov. 5, at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place in Melbourne, Florida.
The Central Florida Humanitarian Awards were created six years ago by Maverick Multimedia, publisher of Space Coast Medicine & Active Living magazine and Space Coast Daily, to recognize outstanding individuals and organizations that dedicate their time, talent or treasure to help people in need locally – and around the world.
TIME: In this category consider candidates who have selflessly and consistently devoted their time as volunteers at hospitals and nursing homes, in activities for the less fortunate and as organizers, administrators or operatives in the many other altruistic endeavors in our community.
TALENT: In this category give consideration to those who have volunteered their special talents and expertise to address specific circumstances in which the lives of those in need are improved.
TREASURE: The humanitarians in this category will include those who have generously shared their monetary good fortune and/or volunteered their time and efforts in fund raising for the advancement of a philanthropic cause.
All 2015 honorees will be featured in the Oct/Nov 2015 edition of Space Coast Medicine & Active Living magazine and SpaceCoastDaily.com.
The first Gala was held in 2010 and is produced by Brevard Productions.
ORGANIZATIONS AND INDIVIDUALS SELECTED TO BE HONORED INCLUDE:
• Brevard Family Partnership
• Brevard Neighborhood Coalition
• Brevard Special Olympics – Debbie Spence
• Lila Buescher
• Canine Companions for Independence
• Childrens Hunger Project
• Circles of Care
• Ginger Davis
• Cove Merchants Association
• Dr. Brian Dowdell
• Early Learning Coalition of Brevard
• Betsy Farmer
• Darcia Jones-Francey
• Harris Corp. Foundation
• Malak Hammad
• John & Cynthia Handley
• John Harper
• Mike & Stephanie Haridopolos
• Sheriff Wayne Ivey
• Robert Jordan
• Dr. John Lovejoy Jr. & Dr. John Lovejoy III
• Victor Luebker
• Rita Pritchett
• David Schmitt
• Oscar & Turney Sieveking
• The 2015 Central Florida Humanitarian Lifetime Achievement honoree is Dr. Anthony Catanese.
HONORING SELFLESS VOLUNTEERISM
As always, the Central Florida Humanitarian committee will also honor hospital and hospice volunteers from Health First Hospice, the Dr. Jey Pillai Center for Hospice Care at Wasdin Woods, VITAS, Hospice of St. Francis, Health First Cape Canaveral Hospital, Health First Viera Hospital, Health First Holmes Regional Medical Center, Health First Palm Bay Hospital, Wuesthoff Medical Center – Melbourne, Wuesthoff Medical Center – Rockledge, the VA Clinic in Viera, and Sebastian River Medical Center.
“Over the years, our editorial team has had the distinct honor and pleasure of identifying and featuring the many members of our community who give back so much and are dedicated to reaching out and helping others, here and throughout the world, in a multitude of ways,” said Maverick Multimedia Editor-In-Chief Dr. Jim Palermo.
“For the sixth consecutive year, we will once again produce the Central Florida Humanitarian Awards Gala on the first Thursday of November. This year, more than 42 deserving humanitarians will be honored during the Gala.”
The Central Florida Humanitarian Awards will be part of Space Coast Medicine Week, a comprehensive series of health and educational events produced by Space Coast Medicine & Active Living magazine and Space Coast Daily.
JOIN US FOR AN INSPIRATIONAL EVENING
This inspiring and compelling event is sponsored by M.H. Williams Construction, Parrish Medical Center, SOAR, Brighthouse Networks, Wuesthoff Health System, First Choice Medical Group, Clear Choice Health Care, Florida Pain Institute, Brevard Geriatrics, Knudson Brain & Spine Law Injury Office, Dr. Mark Pinsky, Space Coast Medicine & Active Living magazine and SpaceCoastDaily.com. Each honoree or organization will be presented the Central Florida Humanitarian Crystal Globe.
“We would like to thank our long list of sponsors who support the Central Florida Humanitarian Awards and who make this wonderful event possible,” said Giles Malone, a partner with Maverick Multimedia and Brevard Productions, who annually produce all the events of Space Coast Medicine Week.
COMPELLING MULTIMEDIA TRIBUTE VIDEOS & STORIES
Stay tuned to SpaceCoastDaily.com and Space Coast Medicine & Active Living magazine for exclusive and comprehensive multimedia coverage of each honoree as we present their compelling stories.
“Please join us on Thursday, Nov. 5 to celebrate and be inspired by these incredible individuals and groups,” said Maverick Multimedia President & Publisher Tom Palermo.
“In the meantime, please click the link below that showcases the distinguished Central Florida Humanitarian Alumni.”
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE CENTRAL FLORIDA HUMANITARIAN ALUMNI
FOR MORE INFORMATION or to make a reservation to attend the Central Florida Humanitarian Awards Gala call 321-323-4460 or 321-615-8111 or e-mail MaverickMultiMedia@gmail.com
CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE TICKETS
ABOVE MAP: The 2015 Central Florida Humanitarian Awards will take place Thursday, Nov. 5 at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place, located at 200 Rialto Place in Melbourne, Florida.