That’s how family physician Ranit Mishori, left, of the Georgetown University School of Medicine counseled ABC News medical editor Richard Besser and others when they came upon a woman who was in labor, not knowing whether there was a medical facility nearby.
“Rich Besser has come upon a situation in the tent city in Haiti where he is needed to help deliver a baby,” wrote Roger Sergel, managing editor of medical news at ABC. “If you are on line right now please advise….”
Then minutes later, “Important update. Baby may be breech.” Also included in Sergel’s email was a shorthand message from Besser, “No phone. Email only old. And not reliable. Pls send what u can. Baby may be breached. No hospital. Out in open air.”
Haiti has a high rate of mortality to both mother and child during birth. In a good situation, the stakes are high, but coupled with the earthquake-related trauma, birthing can be deadly.
Mishori was away from her computer but with iPhone in hand, she responded immediately. Among other medically relevant questions, she asked, “Is she fully dialated? Complete breech?? Footling?”
Mishori, one of only a few doctors who responded to the messages, gave the ABC team who was with the woman instructions until they found out about a makeshift hospital an Israeli response team had set up on a soccer field, and took the woman there.
Later, Besser wrote, “To all: We’re with the Israeli’s… Should deliver vaginally. Thanks to everyone!” ABC News reported that the baby girl, although born prematurely, will be fine.