Including Indonesia, Sri Lanka
MSF has sent more than 150 international aid workers and 300 tons of relief materials to provide assistance to people affected by the earthquake and resulting tsunami in South Asia. MSF is focusing aid operations on Indonesia and Sri Lanka, but is continuing to assess the humanitarian needs in the region. Additional aid workers and relief cargo will be deployed as needed.
The following are summary of MSF activities in the crisis regions(update: Hong Kong Time 6:00pm 07/01/05):
Since an MSF emergency team arrived in hard-hit Aceh, Indonesia, more than 60 MSF international aid workers and more than 120 tons of relief, food, and medical materials have been airlifted to the area.
In Banda Aceh, MSF has provided more than 440 corpse bags to local authorities in charge of removing bodies. An MSF water-and-sanitation team has set up a five cubic meter water bladder to provide cleaning drinking water for approximately 1,700 displaced people living in a building in the city.
From a base in the provincial capital Banda Aceh, MSF is operating mobile medical teams by helicopter to the east and west. The helicopter is filled with aid workers and medical supplies. The remaining capacity is filled with rice, tarpaulins, water, and other aid supplies.
When the MSF team reaches an area they do a rapid assessment of the needs and conduct medical consultations for people in the immediate area, and then leave food and shelter materials before taking off for the next site. The team transports any seriously wounded people back to Fakine hospital in Banda Aceh, where they receive treatment for broken limbs and infected wounds. The next day the team returns to the area with specific supplies, based on their initial assessment, to best meet the most urgent needs of people.
MSF has dispatched a surgical team to Sigli General District Hospital. The 35-bed hospital has remained open with the help of Indonesian staff - many of the employees of the hospital were killed. MSF is sending a water-and-sanitation team and two mobile clinics to aid 14 displaced-persons camps around Sigli.
MSF is working with the Greenpeace ship ¡¥Rainbow Warrior¡¦ and its crew of 19 to transport equipment, food, fuel, medical supplies, and MSF medical staff from Banda Aceh to Meulaboh.
MSF has more than 40 aid workers, including doctors, surgeons, nurses, and logisticians, on the ground in Sri Lanka. They are trying to coordinate their efforts with the already strong response from local authorities and communities. For example, a local brewery has replaced its beer production with bottling water.
Charter planes with more than 200 tons of aid supplies have arrived in the capital Colombo. In addition to relief materials, the cargo contains the equipment and supplies to set up hospitals to care for 40,000 people for a period of three months.
Heavy rains in the Ampara and Batticaloa regions, where MSF has focused its work, have severely impeded aid activities. Road and bridges in the area had already been destroyed or severely damaged by the tsunami.
MSF is operating 13 mobile clinics on the east coast. Each is providing an average of 150 medical consultations per day. MSF is supporting the three main hospitals in Ampara, where the Sri Lankan government estimates that more than 180,000 people are homeless, and plans to set up three field hospitals.
MSF teams will distribute shelter materials like tents, mosquito nets, and jerry cans to 6,000 families, roughly 24,000 people, living in 125 settlements in and around Ampara. MSF is also establishing an epidemiological surveillance system as well as providing water-and-sanitation support for 60 settlements of displaced people.