Keck doctors will hold discussion about Haiti at UPC

Similar to last week’s event at the Health Sciences Campus, the 10 doctors from the USC Keck School of Medicine who traveled to Haiti for emergency medical relief will share their experiences on the University Park Campus and are inviting all USC students, faculty and staff to discuss how they can get involved in the rebuilding of Haiti.

The event, “USC’s Response to the Tragedy in Haiti,” is Wednesday from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Salvatori Computer Science Center, room 101. The presentation will have the same structure as last week’s, but this time all members of the USC community are invited. Doctors from the USC + Los Angeles County Haiti Medical Aid Team will share their experiences and photographs from their two weeks’ worth of surgical and medical work in Haiti.

“It’s an attempt to make sure that the broader USC community and our Trojan family actually hear what we were able to do there and learn more about the situation and Haiti, and to the extent that Keck and USC is engaged in the process,” said Dr. Henri Ford, vice dean of medical education for the Keck School and chief of surgery at the Childrens Hospital Los Angeles.

Moreover, Ford said the last event was predominantly aimed at professionals at the Keck School of Medicine. Keck dean Carmen A. Puliafito and others decided it was important to have a similar presentation that would be accessible to all USC students, faculty and staff.

“What we want to do is really broaden the appeal…the rebuilding of Haiti is going to require a herculean effort from the entire international community,” Ford said.

Both Ford and and team leader Dr. Ramon Cestero, Keck School fellow and trauma surgeon at the Los Angeles County + USC Medical Center, will discuss and show the team’s experiences with the public.

After the presentations, Puliafito will moderate an open discussion between the audience and doctors about the next steps the USC community can take to offer support, according to Leslie Ridgeway, director of media relations at the Keck School of Medicine.

Ridgeway said relief effort organizations and student organizations are attending and will invite attendees to learn about donation options as well as other opportunities available to help the relief effort.

Several students have already called Ridgeway who were interested in attending the event, and Dr. Ford expects faculty from USC’s professional schools to attend.

“[Puliafito] has tried to reach out to his colleagues at the various schools, and we’ve talked about it and we think that this is going to be just the opening forum instead of just a meeting,” Ford said.