AMDA Emergency Bulletin #12: Japan Earthquake and Tsunami
AMDA's medical teams, one in Iwate and one in Miyagi prefecture, are making untiring efforts towards caring for the victims and evacuees. On average, about ten to twenty staff work in each team at a time. Individual staff members are staying in the disaster areas for about a week, as they are taking time away from their own jobs and responsibilities. AMDA secured hotel rooms in a city some distance from the evacuation shelter so that the staff could relax at night in rotation. However, many doctors and nurses said that they would prefer staying in the evacuation shelters with the victims, as they did not want to waste time for traveling.
Iwate Prefecture (Kamaishi City and the town of Ohtsuchicho):
The AMDA team working at Futaba Elementary School in Kamaishi city was invited to the Graduation Ceremony on 29th March, and joined local people in celebrating the children's completion of their 6-year course even in such a difficult time. On the 30th, doctors from Iwate Prefectural Hospital arrived in the evacuation centre of Kamaishi city, and the AMDA team handed over patient records to the Iwate Prefectural Hospital team and gave them a briefing on their activities. On the same day, AMDA started setting up a vehicle with equipment to provide the intravenous drip (IV). This "mobile IV centre" will start operation soon.
Meanwhile, missions from overseas that had arrived on 28th supported AMDA team's medical activities at evacuation shelters in Ohtsuchi-cho. They held a small international conference to discuss ways of supporting victims, and concluded that they would set up a long-term plan of supporting young people by providing a scholarship to high school students. This proposal was received favourably by the schoolmaster of Ohtsuchi High School.
Miyagi Prefecture (the town of Minamisanriku-cho):
AMDA's other team is based in Sizugawa Elementary School in Sanriku-cho and providing mobile clinic service to those who cannot leave their homes and cannot come to the evacuation shelter. The team, cooperating with local health workers, keeps in mind that the elderly people concerned should receive medical service as comfortably as possible. A psychiatrist and a psychotherapist in the team are treating those who have symptoms of stress or mental disorder.
AMDA also received a request for information from an Israeli mission who arrived in Japan the previous week. AMDA and the Israeli team have been exchanging information on their activities.
Latest dispatch of AMDA personnel (as of April 1st)
16th Group: 1 nurse, 1 coordinator (March 30th)
Team from Thailand: 1 doctor, 2 nurses
Total number of AMDA's relief personnel as of March 30th: 98
37 doctors, 17 nurses, 2 midwives, 1 assistant nurse, 3 pharmacists, 1 psychotherapist, 37 coordinators
Stay tuned for more updates.