Following catastrophic Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, International Medical Corps has deployed a ten-member international Emergency Response Team that includes medical professionals and water and sanitation experts. The organisation has also recruited 40 local medical volunteers to staff mobile medical units (MMUs) in and around the hardest-hit coastal towns of Tacloban and Tanauan. Through the MMUs, International Medical Corps will…read more →
Here is what we know about the changing situation in India. Dr. Santhosh Kumar, who is helping to lead our response, arrived in the hardest-hit regions on Tuesday. 200,000 people are stranded due to continued flooding in Ballashore and Mihirbanj districts as the result of Cyclone Phailin that hit India’s east coast on October 12. Dr. Santhosh confirmed…read more →
A view of #Hack4Good from Nick Stanton, Digital Communications Officer, International Medical Corps UK. Just as the weather in London was starting to turn, 1,800 developers, coders and hackers gathered around the world for #hack4good. Across 20 countries, teams worked on their own versions of a hack for ‘good’ but having sat in London working with a team of 4…read more →
International Medical Corps will immediately scale up health care and training programs to support Syrian refugees seeking humanitarian services in neighbouring Turkey, thanks to a $750,000 award from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. “The Hilton Foundation’s extremely generous support will allow us to increase much-needed relief for Syrian refugees who have fled the violence into Turkey, with lifesaving health services,…read more →
As part of its 2013 Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Commitment to Action, International Medical Corps President & CEO Nancy A. Aossey and Global Ambassador Sienna Miller announced a new “First Responders” commitment to assist communities in becoming their own first responders in emergencies and natural disasters. Over the next two years, International Medical Corps will commit to scaling up…read more →
Laura Jepson, Project Reporting & Communications Officer, Central African Republic, reports on some recent expansions in services. Since the start of conflict in December 2012, despite widespread violence and insecurity, International Medical Corps has maintained a presence in the north-eastern regions of Vakaga and Haute-Kotto in the Central African Republic (CAR), providing lifesaving health care and nutrition services to conflict-affected…read more →
International Medical Corps is continuing to monitor the situation in Egypt following the escalation of violence leading to the declaration of a month-long state of emergency. On the morning of August 14, Egyptian security forces moved in to clear two sit-ins staged by supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi, leading to the deaths of at least 525 people…read more →
International Medical Corps’ mental health care specialists are working with hundreds of displaced refugee children in Jordan and Lebanon who have faced violence and now are struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder and the trauma of their experiences during conflict in Syria. Our work giving help to Syrian refugee children in the UNHCR run Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan was featured…read more →
The experience of an International Medical Corps Volunteer at the start of her career in the international development sector Let me introduce myself: I am Kim Janssen from Holland and I moved to London in February 2013, with the main objective of finding a job in the international development sector. Last week I heard I have been successful: I found…read more →
International Medical Corps is proud to mark World Breastfeeding Week, held the first week of August. Celebrated in more than 170 countries, the week promotes the importance of breastfeeding for infant nutrition and health. Why breastfeed? Breastfeeding is the best way to give newborns the nutrients they need. Breast milk is highly nutritious with easy-to-digest proteins and natural immunities that…read more →
Just 22 hours after the devastating 7.0-earthquake hit in January 2010, International Medical Corps’ Emergency Response Team was on the ground in Haiti providing medical care to survivors. Our doctors and nurses were able to mobilise on an unparalleled scale to provide 24-hour emergency care to the acutely injured at the Hôpital de l’Université d’État d’Haiti (HUEH), a 700-bed hospital in Port-au-Prince. HUEH was badly damaged in the earthquake and many local health care professionals were missing. We were able to save thousands of lives through emergency and trauma care in the critical days following the earthquake.
At the height of emergency operations at the hospital, International Medical Corps treated approximately 1,000 patients per day. Our early entry also gave us the foundation to rapidly expand our operations to 15 mobile clinics throughout Haiti to provide critical services. Through the hospital and mobile and fixed clinics, International Medical Corps teams provided more than 110,000 patient consultations during the first year following the emergency.
When reports of acute diarrhoea emerged from the north of Haiti in October 2010, International Medical Corps doctors and nurses immediately deployed to the region providing emergency relief for the growing cholera crisis. Our network of rapidly constructed cholera treatment centres, supported by 820 community health volunteers to educate communities on how to prevent and identify cholera, meant that more than 30,000 cholera patients received life-saving treatment within the first year following the outbreak.
International Medical Corps was among the first organisations to enter Libya once the conflict began in February 2011, providing emergency medical care to casualties from the fighting and support to hospitals with medical staff and supplies. Among the first challenges our Emergency Response Teams encountered was a chronic shortage of nurses, as thousands of foreign nurses had fled the country. In partnership with the Jordan Health Aid Society, International Medical Corps immediately deployed volunteer nurses to health centres across eastern Libya moving them to towns and cities throughout the country as access permitted. Volunteer nurses trained the local counterparts while working alongside them.
At the country’s borders and within Libya, we supplied those displaced by the fighting with essential relief items, including blankets, bottled water and food. Recognising the danger posed by communicable diseases, our sanitation and hygiene specialists constructed latrines and washing stations in transit camps along the Tunisia borders.
As the fighting went on International Medical Corps worked as close to the front line as possible, providing emergency treatment to those injured in the conflict, and medicines and supplies to besieged towns and cities. In Misurata, inaccessible by road, we evacuated nearly 500 injured civilians by boat. International Medical Corps’ mobile field hospitals treated the wounded from battles in Tripoli, the Western Mountains, Bani Walid, Sabha, Jufrah and Qaddafi’s hometown of Sirte.
International Medical Corps mobilized an emergency response in Mali in January 2013 after rebel armed forces from the north began moving south, triggering French military intervention. In Timbuktu, which had spent months under the control of armed Islamist rebel our team were amongst the first international organisations to arrive and found pillaged clinics, missing medical personnel and damaged health infrastructure.
We immediately began supporting eight strategically targeted health clinics in remote areas around Timbuktu, where the Malian Ministry of Health has been unable to maintain adequate services to local communities. By providing medicines, training staff and recruiting qualified doctors and nurses, we can ensure local people will now have access to basic primary and secondary health care for the first time in months
True to our mission to build self reliance, International Medical Corps is also already training community health workers to go out to local markets and spread essential hygiene, reproductive health and nutrition messages. We are also working to rehabilitate clinics damaged during the conflict, by building or repairing latrines, water systems, solar panel systems and other infrastructure repairs, enabling health workers to have stable and well-equipped facilities to help the people of Mali.
Basanti, a young mother of two in Nepal, returned home from fetching water for her family to find her 8-month old son Bishal had fallen into the open cooking fire. Basanti was in shock, but she wrapped her baby in blankets and ran for help. No one in their village or at the local health post knew what to do so she had to travel more than six hours by bus to seek emergency care at the closest hospital. The district hospital could only stabilize Bishal and wasn’t able to treat his wounds properly. As a result, his little fingers contracted into a fist as the burned skin contracted and “healed” over the coming year, making it impossible for him to use his hand. His cheek, lips and eyelid also contracted and tightened, threatening his vision.
After selling part of their farm to pay for transportation to Kathmandu, Basanti sought further treatment for her baby. However, two hospitals in the nation’s capital could not help either. Adding to Basanti’s struggles, her husband abandoned the family, leaving her alone to care for Bishal and his four-year-old sister.
Thankfully, Basanti heard about the surgical care available through ReSurge International, our trusted partner with a 43-year history of serving burn victims. Dr. Rai, ReSurge’s Outreach Director in Nepal, and his team restored Bishal’s eyelid and his hand will soon be surgically repaired as well.
Even though it took more than a year for him to get appropriate treatment, Bishal is one of the lucky ones. Thousands of children never get the care they need to live a normal life after a disabling burn.