Syria crisis: Refugees in dire need of medical services
Malteser International provides care in new camp.
Malteser International, the worldwide relief agency of the Order of Malta, is expanding its emergency medical relief activities on the Turkish-Syrian border. Three doctors and three nurses are providing health care at a new refugee camp near Kilis, which opened its doors to nearly 4,000 refugees yesterday. Another 1,000 refugees should be admitted to the camp in the coming days. The new health center already attended more than 80 patients in its opening day.
“The people coming into the camp have spent many days and nights on the run, sleeping in the open with nightly temperatures down to six degrees, in poor hygiene conditions – this causes diarrhea, respiratory infections and skin diseases. Some have injuries such as broken bones or wounds,” says Malteser International health advisor Sandra Harlass, who is currently assisting the setup of the medical activities in the camp. Among the doctors, a gynecologist provides special care for pregnant women.
Together with its local partner, the International Blue Crescent, Malteser International will also distribute relief packages with baby food and hygiene kits. The new center complements Malteser International’s other health care measures in the region, such as a temporary field hospital in the town of Kilis – an in-patient 28-bed facility which serves to support the town’s hospital, a first stop for seriously injured or ill Syrians fleeing to Turkey. Also planned are two mobile medical stations – containers transported on trucks equipped with high-quality medical gear. In a few weeks, these units will bring health care closer to the sick and injured and reach more people in need of medical help.
Malteser International has been active in Syria, Turkey and Lebanon since August 2012, providing emergency aid for more than 30,000 people.