NEWS AND UPDATES
Winter clothing donation to families in Kosovo (see news report)
Winter coats and boots were personally delivered to 51 children ahead of the winter months. Please note that this was a private donation from SAMA members, and as it did not fulfill SAMA's mission (medical/health care), no SAMA funds were used.
However, if you’d like to contribute to kuhinje, clothing and many other needs for people in Gracanica in Kosovo, please go to the site Majka Devet Jugovica.
October 3-8, 2020
Visit to Serbia, including Kosovo and metohija
Our tour started in Gračanica, where we met with bishop Teodosije, Dr. Zvonko Starcevic, our trip leader and Protinica Svetlana who leads the humanitarian organization “Majka Devet Jugovića”.
Masks in hand, to be returned immediately after the photo was taken!
2. Goraždevac and Velika Hoča:
In Goraždevac to visit the health center in Peć. Here, we met with Dr. Stanislava Radović and also delivered an ECG, microscope, stethoscopes and blood pressure monitors, which were donated on behalf of SAMA. We also went to Velika Hoča where we met with Dr. Vlada Pavlović, and delivered stethoscopes, blood pressure monitors, and pulse oximeters.
In Kosovsko Pomoravlje, which is home to over 30,000 Serbs, mainly in Gračanica and surrounding areas, but also in numerous enclaves. The hospital in Pasjane is, for the most part, well equipped to meet the needs of their patients. The hospital facility itself is also in relatively good shape. However, they currently do not have an x-ray machine, and patients normally have to travel to have imaging done elsewhere. SAMA would like to work towards procuring a portable x-ray machine for the hospital, which would cost approximately 90,000 euros, and make a huge difference in patient-care.
Visit to Novi Pazar Clinical Center
The Health Center in Novi Pazar has been heavily affected by the COVID-19 pandemic – Novi Pazar had one of the highest incidences of COVID-19 in Serbia, as well as one of the highest mortality rates. SAMA previously donated two patient monitors and blood transfusion warmer to the hospital, which were delivered prior to our visit.
The hospital is overall in very good shape and does receive substantial government funding. The facilities are relatively modern and the staff is well equipped – as such, we do not think that there is much scope for SAMA to help. However, we are interested in supporting medical education and are brainstorming ways to do this.
September 24, 2020
SAMA Annual Tennis Open
Dear SAMA friends,
We hope you are all doing well and staying healthy.
Normally at this time of year, we would be dusting off our tennis rackets and gearing up for SAMA's annual Tennis Open. However this year, with consideration of your health and safety, we regret to announce that we have decided to cancel the event.
We hope you still find some time to practice! - depending on the circumstances, we may postpone the event until Spring next year.
Thank you for your understanding.
We hope to see you soon!
August 1, 2020
8th ANNUAL SAMA WALK
SAMA held its 8th annual walk, following appropriate mask and social distancing requirements. We are grateful to the ones who could come and show their support personally. We are also thank full to the many who could not come but sent a donation instead. All together, we raised about $7,000!!!
At this moment, there is a little more than $30,000 on our account. We have signed agreements with the directors of health centers in Pec-Gorazdevac and Velika Hoca in Kosovo-Metohija where the most basic material and medicine are badly needed. With the funds available, we are also hoping to help the infectious disease clinic in Belgrade, which despite very vetuste building infrastructure continues to play the central role in the treatment of patients with infectious disorders throughout the region.
We wish to thank all of you who have donated for your generous suoport and hope to be able to count on you in the future.
In good health,
July 10, 2020
Dear friends of SAMA,
As you know, many parts of Serbia have been experiencing a rapid uptick in COVID-19 cases and deaths after lockdown restrictions were lifted last month. We have been in touch with several health center directors with whom we have worked on projects in the past about the current state of affairs in their hospitals. While the patient volume has been increasing significantly, there appears to be no immediate shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) or ventilators. However, as this trend in patient volume continues, shortages might become a problem in the near future.
While SAMA activities have been mostly suspended for the year, we feel compelled at this time to support the efforts of healthcare providers in Serbia who risk their lives daily in service of our Serbian brothers and sisters. As such, SAMA is raising funds for health centers throughout Serbia, in anticipation of future demand for PPE.
If you are interested in contributing towards our fundraising efforts, or if you would like to learn more about how these funds will be used, please follow this link.
Lastly, we recognize the financial hardships brought on by the pandemic. If you are unable to donate, please support our campaign by sharing this link or email with others in your community.
We thank you for your support and hope to see you soon.
In good health,
July 01, 2020
At the request of Dr. Mithat Music, surgeon at the Novi Pazar Health Center, SAMA purchased EKG, pulse oximeters and patient monitors worth a total of $9,983.07. All these have been purchased and are ready for delivery.
We wish for our friends and compatriots from Novi Pazar to stay safe and healthy, and we are looking forward to meet them in September during our trip thru Serbia.
Thank you to all of you who with your generosity have helped all the citizens of Serbia during these hard times.
June 20, 2020
Due to the situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Serbian American Medical Association's activities have been very limited.
SAMA is closely following the developments in Serbia and we are in regular contact with physicians with whom we have been sharing experiences and available data.
We realize that SAMA can only have a relatively small impact on the situation, especially considering that Serbia is already been helped by several governments (Serbia, China, EU, Russia) and has received millions of dollars worth of donations from individuals. It is important to know that according to official government statements there appears to be sufficient supplies of equipment and material such as respirators and PPE.
We expect that when this epidemic passes there will be more systematic investment in the Serbian health infrastructure. The main hospital in charge of fighting this epidemic (Clinic for Infectious Diseases in Belgrade) is in horrible shape (see pictures SAMA took during a visit in 2018 and the following link) and promises made by the Serbian government have been made that construction of new buildings was imminent. Dr. Stevanovic, director of the clinic, was doubtful that this would happen and asked for help in reconstructing few patient rooms.
We do plan to go and visit Serbia as soon as the situation allows. We have few projects in preparation including help to Serbian enclaves in Kosovo, as well as the above mentioned project for the Infectious Clinic.
As always, we are hopeful that together we can continue to support the people in Serbia and the Balkans. We are greatly thankful for all your help.