A great article featured in The Daily Northwestern on Dr. Khare’s work in the Philippines post Typhoon Haiyan. Read it HERE.
When disaster strikes many of us ask ourselves: “how can I help?” While many of us scramble to find and buy things to donate and others volunteer their services, Dr. Chan, Director of Global Emergency Medicine supports a team of researchers in the transition phase of the Typhoon Haiyan disaster. The aim is to further understand how “relief workers and affected communities—whether they are providing food, medical care or other aid—to make the best possible decisions in the field, and to have access to appropriate tools and technology.” (see full NMH foundation article HERE)
Dr. Chan was a first responder to Hurricane Katrina, the 2010 Haiti Earthquake, and the 2007 Borena-Guji Conflict in Ethiopia. She is currently working with the Disaster Resilience Lab by supporting the team who is currently in the Philippines from Chicago. “We’re united by a mission to provide help during [the transition from crisis to recovery] in the Philippines, and to do in-the-field research which can help the relief and recovery communities make better decisions and be more prepared for future disasters. We want our work to have a positive impact on future relief efforts.” she states.
Read more about the Dr. Chan and the DRL and their project HERE.
(guest blogpost by Lisa Nono)
Dr. Khare is back from his trip to the Philippines where he was a volunteer on a medical mission. He blogs about his trip:
“…we saw hundreds of patients, I incised and drained so many abscesses, and I feel we did some good work. Unlike some of my other disaster experiences, I felt extremely optimistic about this country. The Filipinos are extremely hard-working, very passionate about their country, and very thankful for their international response they received. “
Read more and see pictures from Dr. Khare’s trip to the Philippines here.
As part of a trans-disciplinary research team from the Disaster Resilience Lab who are now en route to Tacloban from Cebu, I’m helping the team with real-time health updates until our connectivity drops off.
The health activities are one of the cornerstones of transitioning from crisis to recovery. There are currently hundreds of dedicated individuals from the Department of Health, the Red Cross Movement, and national, local, and international NGOs who are working tirelessly to provide necessary health support.
Here are some updates.
– Children in Tacloban, Guiuan and many other regions have been identified as high risk for malnutrition; there are 37 severe and 183 moderate acute malnutrition cases as of 12 December. Organizations are working to establish outpatient feeding centers and are seeking breast feeding counselors.
– Facilities- many hospitals remain severely damaged some with limited electricity with deliveries at night, others with lack of access to funds for ambulances, and other with lack of access to sanitation for health services. Many rural health units do not have generators.
– As of 6Dec 65 medical teams are still in the country and some have been asked to extend their stays, many are from the Asia Pacific region and also include ICRC, ~12 MSF teams, IMC, Samaritan’s Purse and many others.
– Mental Health and Psychosocial Support systems are being established by the Department of Health, the WHO and MHPSS.NET
While I’m struggling to keep up with my research team by transferring low file size interview protocols, confirming SMS connectivity with the team, reaching out to NGOs in Guiuan with limited connectivity, and updating blogs, twitter, facebook and other social media, I’m encouraging my colleagues in the field to try sleep, take 5 min of break (b/c mental health for all in the field is crucial and an under supported effort) I’m humbled by the dedication, passion and resilience of affected communities and the agencies that go to great lengths to support post crisis countries.