September 2021
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Note from Elizabeth (EJ) Ashbourne, PQMD Executive Director

I hope everyone is enjoying some cooler weather these first days of Fall and looking forward to the holidays right around the corner. Our members continued their work this month on important programs and initiatives to advance our impact in global health. 

We hosted two Coffee Chats for members in the month of September. The first was a guided conversation about “Innovation at PQMD.” You can read more about the discussion in the newsletter below. Our second Coffee Chat provided the opportunity for members to discuss how emerging corporate roles in disaster response, recovery, and preparedness efforts feed into timely and effective response. If you are interested in learning more and joining these continuing conversations, please do so on PQMD’s Community of Practice

In addition to our Coffee Chats, PQMD recently held our monthly Pillar Talk Webinar, which was a Q&A with supply chain experts who addressed the pertinent supply chain questions regarding medical donations. You will find more information and a link to the recording of this Pillar Talk below.

Also, I am thrilled to announce that we have released our Medical Missions Guidelines Module on our website! Please stay tuned for the Spanish version which will be coming soon. We will be highlighting this valuable new resource in the coming months.

Finally, we are in the final stages of preparation for the launch of our newest initiative, the development of the Global Alliance for Rare Diseases (GARD). More information is included below. 

Thank you so much to our members for their continued hard work addressing critical global health issues around the world. I hope everyone enjoys the Fall season and continues to stay safe!

PQMD Programmatic Update-  Innovation at PQMD 

During the month of September, PQMD’s Knowledge and Innovation committee invited the membership-at-large to join in a guided Coffee Chat conversation about “innovation at PQMD”.  This virtual exchange of ideas provided a launch pad for PQMD to catalyze 1) how members highlight, promote, learn from, and plug into emergent innovations, and 2) maximization of opportunities and environments for PQMD and its’ members to pursue innovative projects within PQMD’s scope.

PQMD’s Coffee Chat is an excellent opportunity for members to discuss important issues within their organizations and collaboratively as it relates to PQMD. During the “innovation at PQMD” Coffee Chat, members recognized that innovation in concept and practice is incredibly broad! Within the PQMD membership, innovation covers an expansive range that includes technology, processes, products, programs, implementation, relationships, and partnerships. Harnessing the power of how, when, and why PQMD members successfully collaborate in critical response will underpin and guide the growth of innovation-programming at PQMD.

For more information or to contribute to this important conversation, visit PQMD’s Community of Practice.

Medical Missions Module Now Available on the Website! 

The Partnership for Quality Medical Donations (PQMD) and Health System Strengthening/Medical Missions (PQMD-HSS/MM) initiative designed nine guidelines to align the activities of sending and host organizations through the three main stages of the medical mission: pre-departure planning, during the medical mission, and post-medical mission follow-up.

The guidelines outline general principles to help anyone planning a medical mission to leverage benefits, overcome challenges, and create partnership and mutual respect.

While it’s typically best to begin planning at least six months before a trip, this resource is available to access and revisit anytime.

A Spanish version will also be available soon. To access the Medical Missions Module, visit PQMD's website here.

PQMD Prepares to Launch New Initiative: Global Alliance for Rare Diseases (GARD) 

Access to medicines is particularly challenging for patients living with rare disorders, even in high-income/developed countries, and even after these life-saving treatments have been approved by regulatory authorities and are commercially available. For those individuals with rare disorders living in resource-limited countries, these challenges are further compounded as no treatment options are available due to lack of accessibility, affordability, and/or availability. The paucity of diagnostic resources in an already frail healthcare infrastructure are exacerbated by a lack of rare disease continued medical educational opportunities among clinicians. 

The vision of the Global Alliance for Rare Disorders (GARD) is a patient-centric vision whereby everyone contributes in a meaningful way, everyone shares a united voice and everyone cross-collaborates. GARD will overcome the challenges and obstacles inherent in single-focused  charitable programs to create a strategic, integrated operating model for global access to rare disease therapies, evolve guidelines to ensure safe and quality products and services for patients with rare disorders globally and raise rare disease awareness and education in under-resourced countries.

If you are interested in being part of this exciting effort, please contact Elizabeth Ashbourne. We will be launching in October, so keep your eyes out for the announcement and please join us.


Recording Now Available
PQMD Pillar Talk: Q&A with Supply Chain Experts

Watch the recording of PQMD’s Pillar Talk: Q&A with Supply Chain Experts. During the discussion, panelists tackled the most pertinent supply chain questions including how to optimize efficiency, deal with chokepoints and bottlenecks, mitigate risk, ensure proper sourcing, prepare for future shocks and build resiliency. With decades of best practices and lessons learned to share, PQMD's Supply Chain Experts addressed questions around the vulnerabilities of global supply chains that the pandemic has exposed and exacerbated.

PQMD Programs at a Glance on the CoP (Members Only)!

Looking for a quick way to see what's down the pike for PQMD?

PQMD's Community of Practice can help.  Go to the "Brewing at PQMD" section click on "PQMD Programs: July - December 2021" and get a six month glance of the next Pillar Talks, Coffee Chats, All-Calls, General Management Meetings, and planned PQMD tool updates.  It is a great way to plan ahead and keep abreast of the meetings and learning opportunities at PQMD! 

Project C.U.R.E. Named a 2021 Classy Award Winner 

Project C.U.R.E., the world’s largest supplier of donated medical supplies and equipment to resource-limited countries, was named the 2021 Classy Award Winner in the People’s Choice category. Hosted by Classy, a giving experience platform that enables nonprofits to connect supporters with the causes they care about, the Classy Awards honor today’s most innovative nonprofit organizations and social enterprises. Now in its eighth year, the Classy Awards is one of the largest social impact awards in the country.

Project C.U.R.E. was chosen for its extensive history of excellence in delivering life-saving medical equipment and supplies to hospitals and clinics throughout the under-resourced world. Moreover, Project C.U.R.E. was recognized for providing domestic relief to hospitals, clinics and first responders throughout the United States during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since March 2020, Project C.U.R.E. has delivered over 540 COVID-19 relief shipments, including 18,000 boxes of PPE to first responders in over 575 U.S. facilities.

Read the full press release here. 

Project Hope Brings Hope to the Aftermath of Haiti's Earthquake 

On August 14, residents in southern Haiti were rocked by a 7.2-magnitude earthquake, the biggest to hit the island in more than a decade. By the time it was over, at least 2,248 people had been killed, 12,000 were injured, and 136,800 buildings were destroyed.

With health needs widespread, Project HOPE immediately deployed an Emergency Response Team to Haiti to support the nation’s health care workers and communities. A week after the earthquake, Project HOPE team members helped transfer three patients onto a helicopter for transfer to Les Cayes, including a man who had been buried beneath a landslide for seven days.

Project HOPE’s work in Haiti now focuses on restoring basic primary health services to earthquake-affected communities across the Sud, Grand’Anse, and Nippes departments.

To read the full article, visit Project Hope's website here

Heart to Heart International Deploys to Louisiana after Hurricane Ida  

Heart to Heart International received news coverage about their response to Hurricane Ida in Louisiana. Heart to Heart sent a medical mobile unit to New Orleans with medical supplies and distributed hygiene kits and tetanus vaccines.

Heart to Heart's CEO Kim Carroll was quoted saying "We move quickly. We don't want to move in until we know there's a need. We'll get as close as possible. And when the local officials tell us where they want us... we plug in." 

To read this article, click here. To read another article about Heart to Heart's response, visit this website. 

IsraAid, Heart to Heart International and Henry Schein Collaborate to Deliver Aid in Haiti 

In September, IsraAid's team in Haiti distributed hundreds of hygiene & resilience kits to families in L'Asile, close to the epicenter of last month's earthquake in Haiti, together with Les Amis d'Haiti - LADHA.

The kits were brought to Haiti in partnership with Heart to Heart International, including supplies donated by Henry Schein, Inc. Collaborating with other aid organizations is critical to effective work in disaster responses.

Does your organization have news to share?
 Beth Haynes for placement in future newsletters.
Next Month's Theme: Mental Health

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