Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Kabul Ambulênce

Over the next few days, we will be publishing updates from HEEDA's newest member, Yagana Parwak. Click here for a brief bio of Yagana.

Yagana jaan spent a few weeks in Kabul this past May, working on various HEEDA projects and making careful observations. Please follow along with her blogs and please be sure to share!

{ part 3... }

 --- --- ---     May 26, 2015 --- --- ---

Macintosh HD:Users:yagana_gani:Desktop:untitled folder 2:IMG_0144.JPGAcknowledging the success of our Embrace units and their adoption at a number of it's large regional hospitals, Afghanistan's Ministry of Public Health has requested from HEEDA that the Embrace warmer program be expanded to include Kabul Ambulance! The Embrace warmer blanket can be useful for all infants, not only premature and those at risk for hypothermia. They are especially valuable for infants that are transported by Kabul Ambulance in the harsh winter months. It was devastating to find that all too often, by the time Indira Gandhi Hospital receives infant from the ambulance, the children have died due to the cold.

Kabul Ambulance use to be run through the ICRC, but has been recently been put in the care of Afghanistan’s Ministry of Public Health. The Ministry faces budgetary problems, and the staff resort to pitching in from their already miniscule salaries to fix up the ambulances. When asked what they were in dire need of, they informed us that they lacked proper oxygen, pulse oximeters, thermometers and manometers. Just within the last couple of weeks, they had lost a driver to an insurgency. The traffic conditions are horrible in Kabul, with packed traffic and no distinct lanes, which add another layer of obstacles.

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The first Kabul Ambulance Station was set up in the busy 102 Bistar Khair Khana Hospital. The location is a challenge in itself, as their doors are in the middle of a bustling street market. We went to the paramedic office and lounge- an empty room with one toshak and some old radio and communication machines. The Afghanistan HEEDA representative explained the use of the Embrace Warmer to two members of the team, and units were dispatched to the ambulances, and used for transfers between the various HEEDA affiliated hospitals as well.