The AmeriCares India team, mobilizing and leading a group of volunteer doctors over the course of two weeks, treated nearly 3,000 patients from villages in the flood-ravaged Kendrapara district of Orissa.
Less than 48 hours after monsoon rains gave rise to crisis level flooding on September 9, the AmeriCares India team was the first mobile medical unit to arrive, conducting free medical camps that helped thousands of patients in hard-hit villages. Dr. Swati Jha, Chandrakant Deshpande and Anusha Ravishankar carried out the first round of treatment from September 12-16. Other volunteer doctors sent by partner organizations continued treating patients until a second medical team arrived to conduct operations for an additional week.
AmeriCares India worked with six partners in the Orissa region, treating survivors suffering with flood related fungal infections, fever, cold, cough, upper and lower respiratory infections, gastrointestinal infections, ear, eye and skin infections, body aches and flood-related injuries. In addition, the medical teams managed hypertensive patients and provided supportive treatment to diabetics and expectant mothers.
Villagers form human chain to navigate strong current in flooded area
To ensure that survivors had access to clean water, AmeriCares India supplied enough water purification tablets to provide 15,500 families with water for one month, along with nutritional supplements to 100 expectant mothers and clothing for young children. In total, 2,400 patients from 14 villages received crucial medical aid from the two teams.
“We are grateful to AmeriCares India for introducing us to this aspect of medicine by bringing us here to be a part of the humanitarian aid action and supplying quality medicines, said Dr. Chetan Chaudhari of one of AmeriCares India's partner organizations - Doctors for You. “We are also thankful for the successful and effective logistics of the entire aid operation.”
Meanwhile, AmeriCares India continued to expand flood relief efforts, working with local NGOs to reach more flood survivors each day. Dr. Shital Raval-Patel and Chandu Deshpande along with a team of doctors from Sparsh Hospital were dispatched to the Kendrapara and Jajpur districts to treat an additional 350 patients and provide nutritional supplements to survivors in five villages inundated by floodwaters.
AmeriCares India has delivered more than $50 million worth of critical medicines and supplies in India to date – a figure that continues to grow significantly through the AmeriCares India office in Mumbai. In 2010, AmeriCares India donated products directly to 35 health care institutions in over 13 states.