Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit communities worldwide, Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare donated extra personal protective equipment (PPE) to Central American Medical Outreach, Inc. (CAMO) for medical mission trips. Now, CAMO has returned the favor, providing Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare with gloves, face masks, shoe covers, gowns and face masks with shields.
In addition to Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare, CAMO, which is located in Orrville, provided PPE to children’s advocacy organizations, emergency medical services, and hospitals in Wooster and Orrville.
“In the past, Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare has donated supplies to CAMO when CAMO has taken mission trips to Honduras,” said Katherine Ritchie, gift officer at Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare. “We’ve supported them and now they are supporting us.”
Kurt Holmes, executive director of Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare, said this is a great example of one member of the healthcare community helping another.
“The healthcare community is very supportive of each other, when one has a need, others respond,” said Kurt Holmes, executive director of Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare. “We are proud to be associated with CAMO. The pandemic has reminded everyone that we are a small world and need to work together.”
CAMO is a nondenominational, Christian-based humanitarian organization that brings life-saving medical services, education and community development to Central America. CAMO provides more than 140,000 life-savings services each year to impoverished people who otherwise would not have access to aid.
Kathryn Tschiegg is the founder and executive director of CAMO. When she founded CAMO to serve the people of Honduras and fill the huge gap of services, supplies and equipment, she never imagined that the United States would need PPE.
“Before the pandemic, we would receive the excess of the USA medical supplies on a weekly basis. When the pandemic hit, we had a limited supply which had not been prepared for shipment to Honduras,” Tschiegg said. “The need hit home when we were notified that doctors offices, fire departments and other patient care facilities such as hospice had limited or no masks and gowns to protect their employees or patients.”
CAMO donated supplies to hospice, Wayne County Children’s Advocacy Center, Viola Startzman Clinic, five fire departments/ambulance services, and two hospitals in the community.
“We are grateful for the 26 years of support this community has provided our mission and service to the very poor hospitals and clinics in Honduras,” Tschiegg said. “This is one way we can give back to a community that has been so gracious to us. It is always a privilege to be able to serve no matter where that might be. It is even better when you can return the favor to those who have been so supportive for many years.”
Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare, a not-for-profit organization established in 1982, is an affiliate of Ohio’s Hospice that serves communities in Wayne, Holmes, Ashland and Medina counties. It embodies the spirit of neighbors caring for neighbors with a commitment to relieve suffering, ease fears, and provide companionship along life’s last journey. Ohio’s Hospice LifeCare addresses patient and family needs wherever the patient calls home. Services also include access to the Stanley C. and Flo K. Gault Inpatient Pavilion, providing short-term patient care to manage acute symptoms, adjust medications, or stabilize patient condition.