Medical care also for inhabitants of remote mountain regions

by Christiane Bähr/SHU,  2012/02/21

Since the end of December 2011, the humedica relief measures in the Philippines have been coordinated by Christiane Bähr. In autumn last year, and – most recently – shortly before Christmas, several typhoons had caused devastation and misery there. Together with medical teams, each of which is active for a period of about two weeks, the relief assistant from Hildesheim helps the local population.

Respiratory diseases, wound infections and skin diseases are among the most common disease patterns the humedica doctors treat. Photo: humedica/Christiane Bähr

“Four months have passed since the typhoons “Nesat” and “Nalgae” swept across Luzon, the main island of the Philippines, and the situation in the provinces of Aurora and Isabella in the north east of the country has improved markedly. But nevertheless, the work of the humedica doctor teams was often hampered by difficult weather conditions during the past few months.

However, in January 2012, weather conditions were good and the medical mission team members could offer medical help for two weeks without interruption and even travel to very remote and difficult-to-reach regions.

Numerous inhabitants of these regions are even today still suffering from the diseases that were caused by the consequences of the typhoon disaster that occurred in September and October 2011. So, the humedica team consisting of Dr. Ingeborg Olzowy, nurse Katrin Lange and medical student Saskia Frölich treated many patients suffering from respiratory diseases, flu, wound infections and skin diseases.

Another important event for the people in the provinces of Aurora and Isabella also was the distribution of 650 fishing nets and paraffin lamps. Due to the destructive force of the typhoons, many fishers had lost their fishing nets and most of them also their boats.

Until this day, many of them have not been able to buy new fishing nets due to financial reasons. This situation has had severe impacts on numerous families, since most of them earn their living with fishing.

As the typhoons also damaged a large number of power supply lines, humedica and the local partner organisation Operation Blessing decided to additionally distribute 650 paraffin lamps to the most severely affected families. The people expressed their deep gratitude towards us by means of their laughing faces and an admirable hospitality, which was extended to us in numerous villages.

At the end of January 2012 we left the provinces of Aurora and Isabella with a good conscience, as we had been able to offer sufficient help to the regions’ inhabitants in form of relief goods and medical care. We are confident that the people will now be able to stand on their own feet once more.

On muddy paths and loaded with heavy equipment, the humedica team members reach remote mountain villages in order to offer medical treatment to the people. Photo: humedica/Christiane Bähr

At the beginning of February 2012, the humedica team members travelled to the province of Quirino, a region that also was severely affected by the typhoons in autumn 2011. Since Quirino is located in the mountain region of the Philippines, the small and remote mountain villages are often very difficult to reach.

Above all during the typhoon seasons, these villages are often cut off from the outside world for weeks. And since there are no doctors who work in these areas, many of the people living there have never undergone a medical examination.

Now they are deeply grateful to humedica and Operation Blessing, who often make exhausting and time-consuming journeys in order to help them and to show them that despite their remote location they are not forgotten.

During the first two weeks of February, our medical team, consisting of the two doctors Dr. Gabrielle Harms and Dr. Martin Schulz, as well as male nurse Klaus Ruhrmann and medical student Manuel Bobrich, could offer help to numerous persons living in this place.

For many inhabitants of this region it is important to know that someone takes out time for and is interested in them. Since last weekend, medical care for the people in the province of Quirino has been taken over by a new humedica mission team.”

Dear friends and sponsors, please continue to help the people in the Philippines and support the humedica relief measures by means of a targeted donation. Thank you very much.

      humedica e. V.
      Donation reference “Flood relief Asia
      Account 47 47
      Bank Code 734 500 00
      Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

You can also support us by means of sending a text message: send a text message containing the reference DOC to +49 8 11 90. Your mobile bill will be charged with 5 euros, and 4.83 euros of this amount will be directly channelled into the humedica relief projects.

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