“Unbelievable” was how IRT Executive Director, Barry La Forgia, described the massive destruction he witnessed on a trip to coastal Mississippi where Katrina, the most destructive storm in U.S. history, slammed ashore in August 2005. An estimated 1,245 people lost their lives in the storm and subsequent floods, and total property damage was estimated at $108 billion.

Within 48 hours after the disaster, 30 members of the Disaster Medical Assistance Team, sponsored jointly by IRT and UCSD Medical Center, arrived in New Orleans, where they spent two weeks treating 800-1,000 evacuees a day. We also delivered more than $160,000 in medicines and supplies to hospitals and medical centers in St. Charles and Jefferson parishes near New Orleans.

From September to November 2005, we provided continuous medical services for victims of Hurricane Katrina in Mississippi, rotating nine teams of physicians and nurses in and out of Gulfport and Pass Christian to support temporary clinics set up by Volunteers of America. 

For six years after the storm, we sent 38 skilled volunteer construction teams to the Gulf Coast, repairing or rebuilding 219 homes, working in partnership with the United Methodist Committee on Relief, Mississippi Conference.

Watch a Time-Lapse video of a rebuild in Mississippi:

Population below poverty line:
Total Expenditure on health per capita:
Under five mortality rate:
Physicians Density:
Life Expectancy:
School Life Expectancy:
Literacy Rate:
GDP per capita:
Children Under the age of 5 years underweight:
Unemployment rate:
4.7 Million
% without health insurance:
% of persons living in poverty:
% of high school graduates:
Median household income:

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Disaster Response

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