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On the flight to Haiti I sit with a guidebook and read about raucous street music, voodoo ceremony etiquette, and the beauty of rice and beans. On the flight home I’ll scroll through a spreadsheet of dead children: “The patients who died before surgery are in tab 6,” the email will say. Six days is a long time in Haiti.

I land in the capital, Port-au-Prince, at lunchtime on Friday and take a taxi to St Damien Hospital, where I meet Owen Robinson. In an examination room, he introduces me to Michael Crapanzano, who’s examining a girl with kidney cancer and a huge swollen abdomen.

Michael is a paediatric cardiologist who lives in Baton Rouge but regularly comes to Haiti to do echocardiograms – ultrasound scans of the heart – for Haiti Cardiac Alliance, a nonprofit organisation co-founded by Owen in 2013.

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Image: © Merijn Hos

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