Out-of-state doctors respond to need

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, September 14, 2005

While financial and supply assistance have been coming toBrookhaven, a team of doctors from Indiana is lending its talentsto help displaced residents staying here following HurricaneKatrina.

“We knew there was a need down here,” said Dr. Dawn Lagerkvist,a chief resident physician from Fort Wayne, Ind.

The Hurricane Katrina Medical Relief Clinic has been set upacross from the King’s Daughters Medical Clinic. The free clinic isopen for those displaced by the hurricane and staying in thearea.

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Clinic hours are from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday throughSaturday and from 1 until 5 p.m. Sunday. Transportation also willbe available to the shelter.

Lagerkvist said a doctor will be on call after hours for shelterresidents who can contact the shelter director about gettingmedical attention.

Also, a team of doctors is rotating every few days to and fromthe Long Beach area to assist people there, Lagerkvist said. And adoctor has been present at the Lincoln County Multi-Use Facility togive medical attention to people waiting to get Red Cross disasterassistance.

The team of 18 includes six doctors, a nurse practitioner, fournurses, a counselor and several important helpers, Lagerkvist said.She said the team is composed of family practitioners.

“We do everything from OB (obstetrics) to peds (pediatrics) toadults,” she said.

Lagerkvist said the doctors are part of a residency program atthree major hospitals in the Fort Wayne area. The team is scheduledto be here for two weeks, but their stay could be longer.

Lagerkvist said the cities of Fort Wayne, Warsaw, Marion andHuntington are providing the backing to allow the team to make themedical trip.

“We have some very generous support up there,” Lagerkvist said,adding that needed medicine can be resupplied quickly. “They’llhave medicine to us in a day if we need more.”

Lagerkvist was hopeful the Indiana assistance would ease theload on local doctors who are still dealing with their own patientsin addition to tending to the needs of hurricane evacuees.

“They have the same amount of needs today as they did a monthago,” Lagerkvist said.