Former US President Bill Clinton mourns Dr. Paul Farmer – KT PRESS
The passing of Dr. Paul Farmer left many people devastated. More tributes continue to pour in for the late American physician and philanthropist, Dr Paul Farmer, who succumbed to a heart attack on Monday, February 21, in his apartment at Butaro Hospital in Burera. district, in the Northern Province of Rwanda.
President Paul Kagame led the tributes to Professor Farmer, who was described as a true friend of Rwanda and a kind man whose actions have touched millions across the world.
Former US President Bill Clinton, his wife Hillary Clinton and daughter Chelsea joined other VIPs in mourning Dr. Farmer, co-founder of Partners in Health (PiH), Chancellor of World Health University Health Equity (UGHE) and co-founder of the Butaro Cancer Center of Excellence, among other health initiatives he led.
“Chelsea, Hillary and I are devastated by the sudden passing of our dear friend, Dr Paul Farmer. Paul was one of the most amazing people we have ever known. His pioneering work with Partners In Health has touched millions of lives, advanced global health equity, and fundamentally changed the way health care is delivered in the world’s poorest places,”
“He was brilliant, passionate, kind and humble. He viewed each day as a new opportunity to teach, learn, give and serve – and it was impossible to spend time with him without feeling the same way.
Paul Farmer changed the way health care is delivered in the poorest places on the planet. He viewed each day as a new opportunity to teach, learn, give and serve – and it was impossible to spend time with him without feeling the same way. Full statement: https://t.co/a5MgLrHeyE pic.twitter.com/nwodjTZ3g3
— Bill Clinton (@BillClinton) February 21, 2022
“Our family is deeply grateful to have benefited from his many gifts for over 20 years, dating back to when Chelsea read his work at Stanford, contacted him and earned his mentorship and friendship. never honored to have worked closely with him in Haiti, Rwanda and beyond; to serve alongside him on the board of directors of the Clinton Health Access Initiative; and to be counted among his multitude of friends at worldwide.
“Paul’s passing is a huge loss to the world, but we know his spirit will live on thanks to the incredible work of Partners In Health and all of his partners, the many people who were inspired, like us, by his example, and everyone who lives a healthier life today because he lived and served.
Our thoughts are with Paul’s wife, Didi; their children, Catherine, Elisabeth and Sébastien; his mother, Ginny; his whole family; and all who worked with him, learned with him, served with him, and loved him.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Dr Farmer, 62, succumbed to a sudden cardiac event at his Butaro apartment where he had been since December, working on an oncologist training program. The Harvard University physician, anthropologist and global public health leader spent decades working in Rwanda where he worked closely with the government of Rwanda to establish Butaro Hospital and UGHE.
According to Dr. Sheila Davis, executive director of Partners in Health, Dr. Farmer died on Monday “of a sudden cardiac event while sleeping in his apartment on the campus of a university he had helped establish in the Butaro countryside, Rwanda.”,
He had been in the country since December, teaching Rwandan medical students at UGHE and caring for patients on tour at the hospital. On Sunday, Dr. Farmer had sent a message to his staff expressing his enthusiasm for what he was doing with the new generation of doctors he was helping to train.
“He was so excited about what he saw there. He was doing what he loved,” Dr. Davis said.
It was also revealed that Dr Farmer was due to leave Rwanda at the end of this week to spend a few weeks in Liberia and Sierra Leone before returning to the United States.
President Kagame, who was a personal friend of Dr Farmer, led the tributes, saying there were no words to describe the loss, adding that his family was devastated by the news.
It’s hard to find the words to express the sad news of the passing of Paul Farmer – the person, the doctor, the philanthropist. He combined a lot of hard-to-find things into one person.
— Paul Kagame (@PaulKagame) February 21, 2022
Other world leaders who have joined in the mourning of Dr Farmer include the Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr Tedros and Melinda French Gates, among others.
Deeply saddened and heartbroken by the passing of my dear friend and outstanding global health champion, Dr. Paul Farmer. He worked so hard to #healthequity & against the root causes of injustice. We must never stop carrying on his legacy. We will miss you so much my friend. https://t.co/U0M6JSrbhi
— Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (@DrTedros) February 21, 2022
I am heartbroken that my teacher, mentor and friend Paul Farmer is gone. He taught me what it means to listen – to really listen – instead of burdening myself with my own solution. He showed me how to channel my anger at the barriers that hold people back to stubbornness and optimism.
— Melinda French Gates (@melindagates) February 21, 2022
— University of Global Health Equity (@ughe_org) February 21, 2022