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2 El Paso Doctors Go To Haiti

El Paso, Texas – Two Texas Tech University Health Sciences CenterPaul L. Foster School of Medicine physicians arrived in Haiti early this morning for a humanitarian mission.

They were contacted by the US Coast Guard to help victims of the earthquake, according to a news release. Both Marco Diaz, M.D., and Leonardo Loaiza, M.D., assistant professors in the Department of Community and Family Medicine, are trained and certified in basic disaster life support.

“We have just completed the initial stage of this unbelievable experience,” Diaz said in the news release. “So far, we have had nothing but amazing luck and unbelievable timing. The breeze is hot and with a distinct smell. The damage is immediately evident and we have not yet left the airport. The face of despair and disbelief is still fresh.”

Loaiza, who participated in the 1999 Columbian earthquake relief efforts and the 1995 American Airline crash in Columbia, said every disaster is different and has its own set of issues.

“A disaster is a major call where you have to improvise,” Loaiza said. “Everything you’ve learned is challenged and you have to work faster and use your common sense.”

Today, they begin their trek to the site where they are expected to spend the next two weeks treating patients.

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