(PORTLAND, ORE. - March 26, 2008) For thousands of children in Liberia, each day is a fight for survival. Medical Teams International and two major health care companies are changing that. In a country where a mild cold, a painful ear infection or the onset of pneumonia carries a potential death sentence, this partnership is bringing critically needed medicines to families that have little hope.
In recent weeks, Medical Teams International has shipped more than $5.5 million in donated medical supplies from Abbott Labs and Henry Schein, including basic but lifesaving antibiotics, syringes and sterilizing equipment. Henry Schein’s $550,000 in donated medical supplies will help children in Liberia and Gaza. Abbott Lab’s $5 million contribution of medicines is being used to help people in Lebanon, Jordan and Mexico.
“These medical donations are the difference between life and death for so many children in impoverished countries,” says David Beltz, director of commodity support at Medical Teams International. “It’s heart breaking for our staff and volunteers to know that children suffer needlessly or die because they don’t have a $10 treatment course of antibiotics. With partners like Abbott Labs and Henry Schein, we can use these medicines to bring healing and hope to future generations.”
Last year, Medical Teams International surpassed $1 billion in humanitarian aid shipped around the world—a milestone made possible by hundreds of donations from pharmaceutical companies, equipment manufacturers and hospitals since 1985. Each year, Medical Teams International ships aid containers to 43 international partners.
“Diarrhea is one of the top killers of children under the age of five,” explains Beltz. “Without essential medicines, we are helpless against this disease. We’re grateful to Henry Schein and Abbott Labs in helping us make a difference for so many children around the world.”
Founded in 1979 as Northwest Medical Teams, Medical Teams International is a non-profit humanitarian relief and development organization that exists to demonstrate the love of Christ to people affected by disaster, conflict and poverty around the world. In its 28-year history, Medical Teams International has deployed more the 1,650 volunteer teams and shipped more than $1 billion in antibiotics, surgical kits and lifesaving medicines to care for 35 million people in 100 countries.