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Medications Provide Essential Aid To Haitians In Batey Communities

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By Kaitlyn Nuebel

Haitian sugarcane workers used to live in the Dominican Republic only during the work season, but tumultuous conditions in Haiti have caused many to seek refuge in the Dominican Republic year-round. The Dominican Republic’s government have deemed these Haitian settlements, called Bateyes, illegal and only provide a few public services to the people who live there. Children born in the Bateyes to Haitian parents do not receive citizenship papers and, as a result, cannot go to school or receive public services including those from the country’s public health system.

Jose Yilien dedicated his whole life to working in the sugarcane fields. Now, 78, his health prevents him from working. Without the financial means to afford daily medication to treat his high blood pressure, Yilien suffers from severe headaches, chest pain, fatigue, and confusion. He lives in a room in a run-down wooden building and relies on neighbors to care for him.

A recent shipment of pharmaceuticals from Brother’s Brother Foundation supplied Yilien with a four-month supply of the high blood pressure medication, Atenolol. The shipment, distributed by recipient partner Cross Catholic Outreach and on-the-ground partner Fundación Hospital General El Buen Samaritano (HBS) provided essential medications to nine hospitals in five provinces, many of which see the most vulnerable patients in the country. In addition to Atenolol, BBF supplied these health institutions with Amoxicillin and Azithromycin, medications used to fight infection. For Haitians in the Bateyes without healthcare, these pharmaceuticals can mean the difference between life and death.

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[78-year-old Jose Yilien lives by himself in a room in a run-down wooden building in the Bateyes. A pharmaceutical shipment from Brother’s Brother Foundation provided him with a 4 month supply of high blood pressure medication he struggles to afford.]

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