Surgeon in West Palm Beach continues mission to help Hurricane Maria victims
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (CBS12) —
A doctor in Palm Beach County is trying to continue his mission of helping victims of Hurricane Maria.
Dr. Ramon Vazquez, West Palm Beach-base surgeon, said when the hurricane first hit Puerto Rico donations were pouring in.
But the donations have died down since then, even though the need is still there.
In the last two months, he's taken three relief flights to Puerto Rico, where most of his family lives.
“About half of the family still has no power," Vasquez said. "I have been able to supply them with food."
But his efforts go beyond helping his family.
“On return flights, we are able to evacuate individuals who are in need of medical attention,” Vazquez said.
Vasquez is also donating to hospitals in Puerto Rico.
“One particular hospital I've worked with is Hospital Metropolitano Pila en Ponce," he said. "There I have been able to help bring medical supplies antibiotics which have been the most pressing needs."
Many on the island are facing infection, according to Vasquez.
Right now, he is trying to get more medication to hospitals, but with donations running low and fuel pricing running high, it's nearly impossible.
“What has happened in the wake of all the tragedies that have occurred here in the United States, Las Vegas, the hurricanes, the mass shootings, folks have forgotten that this is an ongoing tragedy that is affecting fellow citizens,” Vazquez said.
Vazquez is currently working with Palm Beach County Cares, a disaster relief coalition, to collect donations.