New York, NY- Callen-Lorde Community Health Center announced that it is sending an emergency medical response team to provide medical relief to Puerto Rico as part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's Empire State Relief and Recovery Effort.
The team is comprised of Spanish-speaking medical providers and nurses with experience in emergency response, and will be led by Dana Delgardo, a nurse practitioner with a background in military operations.
As the only community health center on the first team from New York State traveling to Puerto Rico, the Callen-Lorde team will be joined by teams from hospitals across New York State. The emergency relief teams will be departing for Puerto Rico today, and are expected to be on the ground for two weeks.
"Puerto Rico is a second home for me, and the opportunity to provide quality healthcare to the people there is the ultimate task and honor," said Dana Delgardo, Callen-Lorde's team leader. "We are healthcare providers and it is our job to give quality healthcare to all human beings to the best of our ability. I'm so proud to be a part of this team and this effort"
"It is an honor to have this opportunity to do something directly for Puerto Rico in this terrible time and to be doing it with our team from Callen-Lorde reminds me once again what an exceptional place Callen-Lorde is," said Dr. Peter Meacher, Callen-Lorde's Chief Medical Officer. "All of the staff have rallied around taking extra shifts to make sure the important work we do in New York is minimally impacted. That's the Callen-Lorde family for you!"
"Being from the Caribbean this crisis hits very close to home for me," said Dr. Asa Radix, Callen-Lorde's Senior Director of Research and Education. "I'm pleased that Callen-Lorde will be providing much needed medical attention to the people of Puerto Rico and I'm honored to be part of this dedicated team of providers and nurses."
"We're honored to be able to participate in these efforts to provide critically needed medical assistance to those who are suffering in the wake of Hurricane Maria," said Wendy Stark, Executive Director of Callen-Lorde. "Many of our own staff have family, friends and other colleagues who have been affected, and I am so personally moved by and deeply grateful for everyone's eagerness to jump into what will surely be a very, very difficult two weeks to reach people who are in dire need of assistance."
Callen-Lorde is sending clinical and personal supplies with the team, including sleeping bags, mosquito nets, flashlights, personal care items, drinking water and food.
For updates from our team during their two-week deployment, please visit www.callen-lorde.org/PuertoRico .
About Callen-Lorde Community Health Center
Callen-Lorde is the global leader in LGBTQ healthcare. Since the days of Stonewall, Callen-Lorde has been transforming lives by providing a welcoming environment for LGBTQ communities to get quality care, free of judgment and regardless of ability to pay. The first LGBTQ-centric healthcare provider, Callen-Lorde is widely recognized for its innovative HIV and transgender care. We continuously pioneer research, advocacy and education to drive positive change — not just for our patients — but for all LGBTQ people. For more information about Callen-Lorde and its research and programs, visit www.callen-lorde.org .