Partners For World Health

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Thanks so much for your support.

Elizabeth McLellan

Partners for World Health

Partners for World Health 

PARTNERS for WORLD HEALTH identifies items in hospitals, nursing homes and visiting nurse services that are going to be discarded and makes arrangement for collection and transportation to a recycling service. Volunteers help to sort and package medical supplies and medical goods that are transported to 3rd world country hospitals and clinics throughout the world. Transportation from the recycling center is provided through the use of shipped containers and individuals traveling to foreign countries on pre-designed trips responsible for distribution of medical supplies.  

At present there are a variety of visiting nurse services and hospitals in Maine that have boxes on hospital units. Nursing staff and housekeeping staff in the hospital setting identify items, such as sterile syringes, sterile needles, dressing supplies, tape, bandages and orthopedic supplies as knee immobilizers, etc. that are left behind by patients at discharge and instead of throwing them away in the trash, recycle them to the pre identified bins. Once bins are full, volunteers are notified and items are picked up and transported to the recycling center where they are sorted and packaged. These items have not been used, but have been left behind and are a consequence of our wasteful society. They cannot be reabsorbed back into the hospital or visiting nurse service to be used again. They are discarded. The effort on PWH will help to provide needed goods and supplies to those who have so much less in the world.  

Medical and non medical individuals on a volunteer basis are responsible for the transportation of medical supplies and delivery to third world country hospitals and clinics. The activity of PWH is initiated in the USA and involves transporting medical supplies and goods to countries worldwide.  Past countries that have received medical supplies include Viet Nam, Pakistan, Sri Lank, Ethiopia, Romania, Ghana, Cambodia, India, China, Zimbabwe, Loseto and Thailand.  

At present 10-20 hours a week (one person) is allocated to this effort which includes organizing volunteers, fundraising, documenting supplies and setting up new systems in other facilities. Other volunteers in total are providing 40 hours a week of service. However this is going to increase dramatically once additional hospitals are added on.  

The activity of PWH is orchestrated daily through the recognition at the hospital unit and visiting nurse service levels when items are identified for discard that can be recycled. Deliveries to the recycling center will occur about 2-3 times per week to start and then increase over time as more facilities become involved.  

Funding for the organization will be through grants, foundation support and individual donors.  

A website is currently being designed.  


PARTNERS for WORLD HEALTH provides medical goods for distribution to third world country hospitals and clinics. These goods include dressing supplies, bandages, tape, diapers, sterile syringes, sterile needles,  betadine solution, alcohol swabs, tongue depressors, q tips, ambu bags, oxygen tubing, soap, powder, toothbrushes, toothpaste, IV tubing, medical surgical instruments, basinets, water containers, baby bottles and nipples, wash basins, emesis basins, stretchers, mattresses, sheets and towels, blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes, CPR equipment,  hemostats, forceps, clamps, Kelly clamps, ET tubes, oral airways, trach supplies, otoscopes, wheelchairs, scissors walkers, crutches, commodes, IV poles, sterile and non sterile gloves, measuring tapes, trolley's, linen bags, stools, medical stands, knee immobilizers, beds, scales, and other items as available.  

The program of identifying items is structured in hospitals and visiting nurse services where recycle bins have been set up. Nurses and housekeeping staff identify the items and place in the boxes and volunteers pick up items 2-3 times per week and transport to the recycling center for sorting and packaging to ready for transportation and distribution.   


PARTNERS for WORLD HEALTH identifies items that will be discarded in the US medical system, sorts and packages them for distribution to third world country hospitals and clinics. Foreign countries that have been served include Viet Nam, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Ethiopia, Romania, Ghana, Cambodia, India, China, Zimbabwe, Loseto and Thailand. Regions include country side clinics and hospitals 1-2 hours or further outside of big cities where the most need is reflected.  

Upon arrival in the country initiatives are made to identify a facility that would be best served. This is accomplished by meeting with local representatives from city based hospitals which act as resources for outlying clinics and country side based hospitals. Facilities are identified and visited with an introduction to PARTNERS for WORLD HEALTH with a return visit to provide the medical supplies. Specific countries listed above already have certain facilities where supplies will be distributed.  

The hospitals and clinics in third world countries are the end point for PARTNERS for WORLD HEALTH. They are the recipients of the medical supplies and goods that are provided through a recycling effort of identified items set for discard in our hospitals and visiting nurse services. These medical goods help to provide needed medical services to people who have far less than our US citizens and by doing so, PARTNERS for WORLD HEALTH also helps to prevent the growth of our land fills with unnecessary trash disposal.  

In an email sent to Maine Friends of Haiti on May 3, 2010, Elizabeth McLellan wrote:

“We have shipped to over twenty-six different locations since the move to the warehouse in October 2009. In addition, we have shipped to six different places in Haiti of which the soon-to-be container to Haiti will depart I hope in May 2010. It has been a long time coming but it is on its way. Next one heads to Ethiopia.”


“Partners for World Health's mission is to lower health care costs by identifying medical supplies that are set to be discarded. By removing these items out of the waste stream, Partners for World Health lowers disposal fees that health care facilities have to pay to take their items to the landfill. This in turn prevents an impact on our environment. Partners for World Health makes arrangements for transportation of medical supplies to the 3rd world to those far less fortunate than we are. This is a win-win all around. I have been doing this for years having lived over seas and traveled throughout the world; and finally in 2009 made it into a 501c3 and started collecting this in my house. Ran out of space to say the least and now have four warehouses with one distribution center. At this point all volunteer but it is growing. We have many partners including hospitals, nursing homes and universities; will be setting up a Global Educational Health Series and developing opportunities for medical people to spend time overseas working for a month; along with four trips a year for medical and non medical people to travel and have an experiential opportunity participating in health care provision overseas. Come to the Portland warehouse sometime!  We are on the WEB and Facebook as well.”


Partners for World Health is in the business of identifying medical supplies that are set to be discarded; preventing them from landing in the landfill and making sure that they are distributed to those throughout the world who are less fortunate than we are. Since our move to the Marginal Way facility Partners for World Health has taken on new energy and is a growing organization. And in order to continue our growth and development many volunteers are needed for a variety of projects. 


In addition  we are interested in your thoughts and suggestions as well. I wish to extend an invitation to all to come to the Marginal Way Distribution Center to discuss opportunities for involvement and how you can help to make a difference!!

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES include assisting with fundraising efforts such as the one headed up by Sophie Belanger, RN identifying one restaurant a month to support Partners for World Health; participating as point people for warehouse/distribution opening; participating as medical supply pick up at various locations throughout Portland and Maine; coordinationg marketing opportunties with local media and developing  flyers, brochures, mugs and tee shirts with our logo; coordinating monthly global educational series; assisting with international trip planning; blue wrap project development; coordination of nursing school and other health care professional school community service projects with PWH for fall 2010 and spring 2011 semester involvement; identifying local organizations that would benefit from the services provided by PWH; identifying statewide locations that will initiate a recycle program; identify statewide organizations with overseas involvement who have an interest and willingness to take our supplies overseas; coordinating containers for delivery overseas and more and more and more!!!


Come and learn more about opportunities with Partners for World Health and share your suggestions. If we each take a small part of this, I just know we can do it all!!!!


Thanks and look forward to seeing you.


Elizabeth McLellan