NATION

Medics train for disaster as season nears

    Less than a month before the cyclone season, medical professionals are now undergoing training on how to respond during disasters. Assistant Minister for Health and Medical Services Alex
13 Oct 2016 11:00
Medics train for disaster as season nears
Assistant Minister for Health and Medical Services Alex O'Connor (sitting third from right) with the participants of the Global Health Emergency Workforce (GHEW) Country Preparedness Workshop. Photo: Shahani Mala.

 

 

Less than a month before the cyclone season, medical professionals are now undergoing training on how to respond during disasters.

Assistant Minister for Health and Medical Services Alex O’Connor said: “Fiji is no stranger to disasters. Tropical Cyclone Winston’s impact on Fiji has been substantial.

“We are still in the process of recovery.

“I believe this preparedness workshop is timely to focus on our collective efforts for disaster and emergency preparedness,” he said.

Mr O’Connor said this during the opening of the Global Health Emergency Workforce (GHEW) Country Preparedness Workshop in Suva yesterday.

There are about 30 medical professionals that are undergoing this workshop.

“In mitigating impacts of climate change, emergencies and disaster, the solution is preparedness.

“I understand that this workshop is about the strengthening of our country’s health workforce, which is not limited to staff in the Ministry of Health and Medical Services,” he said.

Mr O’Connor said it was about integrating international medical assets and mechanisms within a coherent national co-ordination structure.

“It is in line for the GHEW responses to outbreaks and emergencies with health consequences, improving a country office readiness and surge staffing for rapid action and deployment.

“In 2015, after Tropical Cyclone Pam, Fiji was able to send its health team to assist Vanuatu,” he said.

Mr O’Connor said this was a first of its kind within this region.

“Our medical doctors and nurses are also being exposed to extreme humanitarian areas such as being deployed to the Golan Heights where they are providing much needed medical services,” he said.

The workshop will end on Saturday.

Edited by Jonathan Bryce

Feedback: shahani.mala@fijisun.com.fj

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