Starlight II operations team in Turkey arrives back home
28 Mar 2023 09:25pm
A total of 110 officers consisting of 14 clinical service specialists, 14 medical officers, 58 health workers and 23 support workers pose for a photo together after safely arriving at KLIA Terminal 1 on Tuesday - BERNAMA
Chief of Defence Force Gen Tan Sri Affendi Buang was at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport here to greet the medical officers, health and support staff, along with clinical service experts who have been assigned in stages since mid-February after the field hospital in Celikhan, Aditaman, around 152 km from Gaziantep, the worst hit area, was activated on Feb 9.
Affendi said that the field hospital treated around 2,415 patients, including 83 surgery cases, throughout its operation, and also provided 159 patients with treatment using the Forward Medical Team approach.
"This approach is to mobilise healthcare workers to resident homes around Celikhan to check up on the elderly who are too weak and to take them to the field hospital if further treatment is needed,” he said during a media conference today, adding that the Malaysian government has donated the hospital equipment and supplies, including 24 tents, field beds and medicine to Turkiye to continue the restoration of health services in the country.
On whether there were enough assets to build another field hospital, he said the Malaysian Armed Forces had adequate and complete assets.
"We do have spares. Actually, the field hospital can be set up in a short time through mobilisation of personnel. If there is an order from the government to provide disaster aid within 48 hours, we can mobilise the field hospital,” he said.
Previously, under Starlight I, the field hospital was set up in Cox’s Bazaar, Bangladesh in 2017 to provide medical assistance to Rohingya refugees from Myanmar who fled to Bangladesh.
A medical officer, Lt Col Dr Zuraini Sulaiman, who had just returned, recounted his experience in Turkiye, saying that the biggest challenges they faced were the cold weather, logistics and communications issues.
The paediatrician said he was kept busy providing treatment to children, especially those with lung infections and asthma.
"We were operating in a hilly and mountainous area, so it was hard for residents requiring treatment to come to the field hospital. Also, there were a lot of closed roads, so we had to look for alternatives to treat them, including using the forward medical teams,” he added. -BERNAMA
KUALA LUMPUR, May 18 - Economy Minister Mohd Rafizi Ramli delivering a keynote address at the National Economic Forum 2023. - BERNAMA photo (2023) COPYRIGHT RESERVED