Sickle Cell Association renews call for funding

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Edda Hadeed, president of the sickle cell association, has renewed the association’s plea to the general public for funds to pay its staff.
“We are really appealing to the public to make donations. You can call my office at 462-9499. No donation is too small but we need to do this. American University of Antigua (AUA) students have started a GoFundMe and there is a thing called Betterplace.org and we are looking at that as well,” Dr. Hadeed said.
She added that the association has approached bigger organisations in the past for funding but she said that doing so in itself is very tricky. She indicated that the problem they encountered in the past was that many do not donate for the paying of salaries but this is what the association needs at this point.
Dr. Hadeed says that while people have been advising the association to make use of volunteers, this may not be a good idea.
She explained that the association tends to employ professionals because it simply cannot use volunteers for the job. She said that the complexity of sickle cell and the treatment of it demand that highly skilled and trained personnel be used. She continued by saying that the association has many contacts in Jamaica, Guadeloupe and at John Hopkins, and their staff will be sent to these various places for training. She said they will be attached to sickle cell units in these places and when they come back they are up-to-date with the latest treatments and procedures.
She also highlighted continuity as another reason volunteers cannot be used. According to her, it is essential for healthcare workers to be familiar with their patients if they are to offer the best service.
Sickle Cell affects at least 1,000 people in Antigua and Barbuda.
The clinic is opened Mondays to Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and can be contacted via telephone number 562-8476.

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