KABUL (Pajhwok): WHO announced on Sunday dispatching mobile health teams, ambulances, trauma kits, surgical and other emergency supplies to treat the individuals injured by deadly quake in southeastern Afghanistan.
The earthquake on June 22 killed more than 800 people, injured 1400 more and destroyed thousands of homes hit Paktika, Khost and Paktia provinces.
“Every life lost in this latest disaster facing the people of Afghanistan is one life too many,” said Dr Ahmed Al-Mandhari, WHO regional director for the Eastern Mediterranean.
In a statement from WHO, he said every life lost represented someone’s mother, father, child, friend or neighbour.
“Our response, and that of all health partners on the ground, is to treat the injured, save lives, and minimise the risk of death and disease in the aftermath of the tragedy,” he added.
On site, the statement said, eight ambulances and two mobile health teams provided by WHO helped transport victims and bodies from affected areas to the nearest hospitals.
A neurosurgeon, doctors, nurses and a trauma management officer were deployed to support hospitals caring for the injured and implementation of mass casualty management plans in the facilities.
WHO said it was also deploying mental health and psychosocial support experts to provide emergency counselling to quake-affected families.
A shipment of almost 10 tonnes of medicines and medical supplies was transported from Kabul to affected provinces, enough for 5400 surgeries and medical treatment for 36 000 people for the next three months.
An additional shipment of health supplies is due to arrive in country from WHO’s logistics hub in Dubai in the coming days.
WHO Representative in Afghanistan Dr Dapeng Luo said: “The earthquake was yet another tragic reminder of the various risks facing the Afghan people and how critical (it is) that Afghanistan should not become another forgotten emergency by the global community.”
As health cluster lead agency, WHO is coordinating the work of the health partners to ensure gaps are identified and support deployed as quickly as possible.
An interagency field mission, including WHO exports, is on site to identify humanitarian needs, including health needs, and additional support will be provided by WHO and health partners as the situation evolves.