The Bairo Foundation is the Australian based fundraising operation for Bairo Pite Clinic - Timor-Leste
Helping to change the health of a nation
We aim to ensure critical funding to enable an essential, free healthcare service.
The Bairo Pite Clinic, through the collaborative work of our foundation, donors and partners proudly remains touted as one of the most trusted and highly visited healthcare clinics in Timor-Leste.
Our Foundation is united in the Bairo Pite Clinic’s work and long-term vision of helping to change the health of a nation.
Our narrative is simple – to continuously address the multitude of serious health issues currently affecting 1.3 million people, provide enhanced access to free health care and to ensure at all times we meet the ever changing needs of the people in Timor-Leste.
Sharing the values of the Bairo Pite Clinic we endeavour to:
Give first priority, at all times, in all that we do, to the health care of all citizens of Timor-Leste.
Show respect and kindness in all our dealings with Timor-Leste citizens to work respectfully within the cultural values of Timor-Leste.
Respect and assist where possible the efforts of other organisations, such as the Ministry of Health and other health care NGOs.
Remain apolitical and non-aligned to any philosophy other than a consideration of what is best for the health of the people of Timor-Leste.
The funds raised through our Foundation and loyal supporters from all four corners of the world directly enables the Bairo Pite Clinic to provide access to free healthcare with a strong focus on the key areas of primary care, tuberculosis, maternity care, malnutrition, and HIV management.
Our Foundation has successfully harnessed financial and media support across the globe and continues to strive for increased funding to ensure the mission and vision of delivering better healthcare, education and enhanced visibility of the issues facing the people in Timor-Leste.
We believe our Foundation is different – comprised of highly skilled people passionate about health and education, our Foundation is built on the dedication and hard work of volunteers.
We welcome you to learn more about us and the pivotal work we perform for the people of Timor-Leste. And hope you will join us on this very meaningful journey and help change the health of a nation.
For 16 years, the Bairo Pite Clinic has advanced the vision of enabling free and critical healthcare to the people of Timor Leste.
Our longstanding commitment and the deep expertise of our local staff has established us as a trusted partner in the region with a proven track record of effecting change.
We bring together individuals and institutions to address the severe health issues facing Timor Leste today.
History and health challenges in Timor Leste
Timor-Leste is a small country in Southeast Asia and covers a total area of 14,919 square kilometers. It occupies primarily the eastern half of the island of Timor, with West Timor being part of the Republic of Indonesia. Timor-Leste is divided into 13 administrative districts, 65 sub-districts and 442 Sucos/villages and 2,225 aldeias/hamlets (DHS 2009/10). Dili is the capital and it is the largest city and the main port.
Bairo Pite Clinic Dili
Measured by both income and human development indicators, Timor-Leste is one of the world’s least developed countries.
of the population live
below the poverty line of
per day (us)
The major health problems currently affecting Timor-Leste according to the World Health Organization are:
- One of the highest rates of women dying from pregnancy and childbirth in Asia.
- More than 45 per cent of children are underweight for their age especially those living in rural areas.
- Limited access to clean water and basic sanitation contributes to the spread of infectious diseases such as diarrhoea, which can be fatal.
- Malaria is highly endemic in all districts with the highest morbidity and mortality rates reported in children.
- Tuberculosis (TB) is a major public health problem with an estimated 8,000 active TB cases nationally.
- Infectious disease, low utilisation of skilled assistance for antenatal and poor reproductive health are the most common causes of infant mortality
- Sexually transmitted infections (STI) are common in sexually active age groups, mostly in Dili and Baucau districts.
- Life expectancy is low at around 62 years.
Dr Dan Murphy (Founder and Medical Director of Bairo Pite Clinic) arrived in Timor-Leste in 1998 (also known as East Timor)
Overcome by the hardship and suffering of the Timorese he was sorely confronted by the severe lack of medical services in a country torn apart by bloodshed and violence.
With the withdrawal of the Indonesian militia, the Timorese health service was in ruins. 35% of all health facilities had been destroyed, supplies looted, equipment rendered useless and with the majority of medical workers evacuated – the country’s central health administration had been destroyed and with it, hope for thousands of critically ill and injured Timorese. In response to this desperate need, Dr Dan set up a makeshift clinic in 1999 in an abandoned Indonesian military clinic located among the ruins of the Dili, suburb of Bairo Pite. With little support, Dr Dan rummaged his way through the ruins in the hope of finding useable equipment and medical supplies to tend to the thousands of returning refugees suffering from the injuries of war, dysentery, starvation, tuberculosis, malaria and malnutrition. At the time, Dr Dan was the only non-Indonesian doctor working in Timor-Leste providing essential, life-saving medical services. Sixty thousand refugees came down from the hills. Many were seriously ill or wounded. Many did not survive. As the violence subsided, thanks to the support of volunteer doctors and medical personnel and the significant financial contributions from individuals and organisations from around the world, the Bairo Pite Clinic took form and began to thrive continuously adapting itself to the changing needs of the Timorese community.
Since our inception, the Clinic has successfully evolved from being an emergency medical centre to a comprehensive community healthcare service that has conducted nearly one million consultations, and had a hand in the training of:
- 1000 international medical students
- 40 nurses
- 26 midwives
- 26 lay-midwives that treat women in remote villages
Today, Dr Dan leads a team of over 80 Timorese staff and he is assisted by a clinic manager and second senior doctor along with volunteers (including internationals) who care for an average of 200 outpatients per day, delivering more than 110 babies per month and treating 2500 patients in emergency. The Clinic has 2000 admissions annually, and conducts more than 400 mobile clinics providing 15,000 regional consultations across 11 villages each year. BPC diagnoses and treats more TB cases than any other facility in Timor Léste. Now known as the Bairo Pite Clinic, this essential, free healthcare service funded by donations remains one of the most trusted and highly visited healthcare clinics in the country.