Needs Remain Urgent in the Philippines

In order to assess the needs to the best of our ability, Doctors of the World worked in collaboration with the Filipino Ministry of Health.

As an NGO specialized in health, we have to be vigilant: even if other NGOs are closing their emergency program, health needs remain urgent. There is a serious risk for epidemics in the next three to six months. That is why Doctors of the World prepared and distributed cholera kits in the localities in which we have teams on the ground.

We initially thought that the relief program could close in mid-February but current assessments lead us to believe that we will need to remain on site through April 2014. We are focused on providing quality care. We are taking our time to meet the needs of populations affected by the typhoon. In order to accomplish this objective, we have launched mobile clinics; we are working to rebuild the local primary healthcare system, and we continue to monitor epidemiological risks.

The majority of people that suffered injuries as a direct result of the storm have been treated. Thus, we are now focusing on isolated populations who no longer have access to healthcare.

In order to offer psychological support to populations traumatized by the typhoon, a psychologist is also training the staff on Doctors of the World’s mobile units. Additionally, the psychologist is offering psychological support to the staff from the Filipino Ministry of Health.

We are here to help the local population in collaboration with the local population. Indeed, it is Filipino medical staff who are most aware of the local needs.