January 18th, 2010
11:55 AM ET
4 years ago

Frist travels to Haiti to help with relief efforts

Former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a heart and lung surgeon, departed for Haiti on Monday as part of a medical mission to provide relief to the battered Carribean nation.
Former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a heart and lung surgeon, departed for Haiti on Monday as part of a medical mission to provide relief to the battered Carribean nation.

(CNN) - Former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a heart and lung surgeon, departed for Haiti on Monday as part of a medical mission to provide relief to the battered Carribean nation.

"I left this morning out of Southern Florida, prepared for disaster conditions and with as many medical supplies as I was allowed to carry," Frist said in an e-mail to supporters Monday. He said he will be blogging and posting photos from the country throughout his trip.

Frist said he is soliciting donations and medical supplies for the Haiti Disaster Relief Fund, a group he founded to assist victims of last week's earthquake. Frist is traveling to Port-au-Prince with Samaritan's Purse, a Christian relief organization.

Chris Walker, a spokesman for the former Tennessee senator, said in an e-mail that Frist will be in Haiti for "as long as needed."

Frist has also undertaken several medical missions to Darfur, the war-torn region of western Sudan.


Filed under: Bill Frist • Haiti
soundoff (52 Responses)
  1. Aunt Bea and Opie

    We wouldnt let Bill work on our farm animals.He is much better working on the dead,guess thats why hes there.Hows Mary Bill?

    January 18, 2010 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  2. Dutch the Great

    Good for you Mr. Frist. How about taking some republicans over there with you.

    January 18, 2010 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  3. "No one gets to walk between the rain." (Quote from Bob Seger); Randall in Torrance, CA (with two Master's Degrees from WWU)

    No – what Frist the Fist is doing is trying to make himself appear as someone who actually cares about less fortunate people. The GOP always fails in this area. If Frist really cared, he wouldn't be wearing a $3000 dollar suit and tie to help the Haitians. They need some with a bulldozer and shovels to dig out the injured, someone who will roll his sleeves up and get dirty in survival rescue mode. Maybe he is willing to tend to wounds and reestablish medical care in a country where people live on $2.00 a day. Under the Frist Plan however, most Haitians don't qualify for health care because they don't make enough money to buy a decent health care plan. Maybe Frist can set up rich health insurance CEOs a base to operate from to establish insurance plans for only the wealthy Haitians, which everyone knows do not exist.

    January 18, 2010 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  4. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Very commendable, and I don't care one wit about his party affiliation.

    January 18, 2010 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  5. southerncousin

    That is good. He can actually make more of a difference than a Hillary Clinton photo opportunity. Liberals talk the talk and talk a lot, Republicans take action. Big difference.

    January 18, 2010 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  6. joe smith

    you see, men of conscience do the right thing..the democratically controlled house/senate want nothing more than to tax the American people into poverty..and they are succeeding..but not for long..when these men of conscience, like Frist ,take back our Nation from the people who would sell our parents inheritance for each of us, and that attainable American dream, one assured us in our Constitution for profit and greed, then its' time to go..

    January 18, 2010 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  7. Steve (the real one)

    Way to go, Dr.Frist! God speed. Although we are told Republicans hate the poor, You are Former President Bush are doing us proud! When it was announced the President Bush was headed to Haiti to partner with former President Clinton, all the hate mongers came out the woodwork. GWB did more for Africa that any other President (hear that Kanye). Yes, the federal Kitrina response was slow, yet the local (city and state) response was almost non-existent. The liberals didn't hammer Nagin nor Blanco. In fact Nagin was re-elected after being notified to get people out and failing to do so. Remember the flooded school buses? Blanco "decided" not to run again! Nagin and Blanco are liberals and maybe that had a little something to do with it! Is it fair to polticize a tragedy? No, but that works both ways!

    January 18, 2010 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  8. Tim

    He's doing a hell of a lot more then most of us chatting a message board. It's not like he'll be spending his time in a 5 star hotel with lunch breaks on the beach. The carnage that he'll be helping with is just mind-blowing. I can't imagine being a rescue worker/doctor/nurse with a constant flow of bodies and no end in sight.
    I'll just say thank you Dr Frist for your service. You're a shining example of the good in America, regardless of political parties, etc.

    January 18, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  9. dude palin

    What took you so long ! Maybe your thinking about 2012 !!!

    January 18, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  10. Obama ... worst President ever!

    Too bad Haiti is having too dig 30' deep holes for graves. We need to start doing that here in America to put democrats in. Start with Obama.

    January 18, 2010 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  11. Obama Victim

    God Bless You Mr. Frist.......and all Republican patriots

    January 18, 2010 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  12. Jim - Michigan

    Wow, it appears that once again the world stage is proving to appealing to Obama. We have millions starving right hear at home. Millions losing or have already lost their homes. Millions unemployed and yet Obama has pulled no punches pushing food and our tax dollars abroad. He wants to earn that Nobel peace prize and breaking the middle class will be the price.

    I have an idea, why not export some jobs to Haiti, pay them for helping themselves and pull them under the new health care plan? Yea, that is the plan oh and we definately need to ensure that every Haitian gets a chance to vote in U.S. elections starting in November. Oh, I have another idea, send ACORN down their to register them to vote.

    Obama needs to personally travel to Haiti now and apologize for us, I am sure in some twisted way America is at fault for the earthquake.

    January 18, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  13. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    No republican can go against the mighty Rush Limbaugh and try to help. He is probably going there to get in the way and hamper relief efforts.

    January 18, 2010 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  14. EX-republican

    Frist should climb back under the rock from whence he came. After the "Nuclear Option" and the Schiavo scandal, he should go away. He is a BIG part of the troubles we suffer from today. We have not forgotten. I wouldnt let this guy operate on my dog.

    January 18, 2010 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  15. aproudmemberoftheunpatrioticmob

    I see we have that libertard elitist with the long handle spewing his drug influenced comments here also. This folks is what Obama is taking our money to support. Nasty, partisan elitists.

    January 18, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  16. Ohio dude

    What a nice guy!

    January 18, 2010 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  17. Jennifer

    The man in that picture looks nothing like Bill Frist.

    January 18, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  18. Debbie

    So NOW Frist is going? Finally. But I will at least give him more credit than Bush.

    Bush is suppose to be a part of raising money with Clinton but where's Bush? Same as in 9/11 and with Katrina...just not going.

    And that will be health care in America too under the GOP... you won't have healthcare cause they just can't deliver.

    January 18, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  19. Pragmatic

    He should invest the time spent blogging and posting photos actually helping people. This is just a political ploy: the best good deeds go unpublished ... un -photographed ... Of course he could always stay home and help by video ... like his diagnosis of Terri Shivo....

    January 18, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  20. Another Day

    Nice Billy, and really you people are bashing a Dr for going over to help. All the help they can get is good help regardless of who. Photo ops and reporters going over there just to say they went over there to have a photo op should be the ones being deplored. Sure he had some bad choices but what person hasn't made a mistake especially those people int he public eye all the time. He is a good man, ground breaking Dr and ultimately will make a difference. Stop hating because I don't see you over there to help.

    January 18, 2010 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  21. Libertarian

    it BAFFLES me beyond belief that folks are pointing at the current administration and saying "LOOK they are failing. They are taxing us! They are taking away our freedoms!"

    Do you remember the BUSH years?!? Record taxes, record deficit, record debt, record oil profits, record bonuses for executives, record bankruptcies, record war spending, record poverty, records for jobs sent to China, and a the best record of all.....collapse of entire banking system. Thanks repubs....I wont be voting you back.

    January 18, 2010 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  22. t22

    I don't get animosity over a doctor volunteering his time and services to the people of Haiti. Do you people only want Democrat doctors to go?

    January 18, 2010 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  23. SlowGun

    Why does he have to go?

    Can't he just make diagnoses via videotape like he did with Terry Shavio?

    January 18, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  24. Duck Fallas

    Frist can cure 'em just by lookin' at 'em.

    January 18, 2010 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  25. DK

    This is plain hypocrisy. (1) His skills are not needed (2) He doesn't care about the poor. If he did he would support them in the on-going Health Care debate.

    January 18, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
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