GOOD SAM HOSPITAL
In April 1985 the First Baptist Church from North Parkersburg West VA, led by Pastor Conrad Lowe, sent a medical clinic to La Romana. This is the earliest record of a medical team we have of American Mission tours to the La Romana region. This trip was planned through the American Baptist Church International Ministries organization.
Their were thirty members on this first tour. They brought with them a large supply of medications as well as 1.5 million vitamins and 2,000 pair of glasses. (Read their report in the Library)
In 1986 the First Baptist Church of Abington, Ma. were working on the new Maranatha Church. During that first mission trip, accompanied Pastor Jean Luc asked Rev. Robert Hinckley and Rodney Henrikson to accompany him to the annual minister's meeting at Central Romana Sugar Company (the Sugar cane Company) on February 20, 1986. Rev Luc’s plan was to ask for a parcel of land to build a clinic-hospital. At that meeting, they were asked to meet further with Felix Malina, who had a better knowledge of what land was available. At a subsequent meeting, when Mr. Rod asked why we needed to hire an architect before we had any land, Felix told him that they needed to know how much land we needed. After the meeting Mr. Rod told Jean Luc to tell the architect to design the ultimate hospital we would ever need because this is a once in a lifetime opportunity and if we do not go for all of it now we will never get another chance. This is why the picture that is in the entry of the hospital shows the clinic portion and a five story general hospital.
Rev. Jean Luc signed a contract with L. Orlando Vasquez N. & Assoc. on February 5, 1988, to design the hospital and do the engineering necessary for the same. On October 22, 1988, Central Romana had the land surveyed and the drawings of the land were done and sent to the lawyer. On April 15, 1989, the Church had the title to the land and started clearing it.
Mr. Rod continued to lead teams every February and in February of 1990, the group from First Baptist Church of Abington started pouring the footing for the new hospital that would rise from that land.
In 1991 North Abington was joined by a team from Wallingford, CT and led by Pastor Bill Heugel.
In 1992 Rev Bob Beaumont from Penny Memorial in Augusta Maine and Rev Gordon Andersen from First Baptist Church in Holden, MA joined the efforts. It was this year the first group from the Presbyterian Church USA joined the effort with a group from the Fairmount Presbyterian Church in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. By 1999 there were 17 groups totaling over 500 volunteers working in La Romana. Today there are more than 60 groups representating more than 1,500 volunteers are traveling to La Roman. You can visit a list of sending agencies and US affiliations by following the links in the Site Links panel.
In 1997 the first floor of the building was complete to the point it could be opened as a clinic. A short, almost impromptu dedication service was led by Pastor Gordon Andersen and the doors were opened to the public and the first clinic was held. Dr. Elihu Wing from Providence, Rhode Island, saw the first our first patient.
The Good Samaritan Hospital was founded on November 9, 1997 by the Haitian Missionary Baptist Church, with the vision of the Rev. Jean Luc Phanord and Mr. Rodney Henrikson. The hospital is located on the street Circunvalación # 79, Sector Heights Villa Verde, La Romana, Dominican Republic.
This began a new chapter in the hospital's life. The early years of operation were very difficult financially. The most sophisticated equipment the hospital had was an ultra-sound unit. Physicians consultations and selling medications were the other major sources of revenue. Financially the transition from construction to construction/operation was very difficult. As more churches traveled to work on the hospital the funds they raised were used to purchase building materials and contributions towards hospital operation were very small, if at all. Were it not for the continued financial support of the Abington Church the hospital would not have become the facility it is today.
There's much more to know about the building of the hospital so please check out the Library.
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