In the last week of August, international medical humanitarian organisation Doctors Without Borders/ Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) carried out a rapid assessment in Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha and Ernakulam districts to identify medical needs of the population affected by floods in Kerala. Last month, the worst floods in nearly a century in Kerala have left many dead and lakhs displaced in relief camps across the state’s 14 districts.
MSF sent a team to set-up medical camps in some of the low-level settlements located in Pathanamthitta district which were hardest-hit by the floods. These settlements are inhabited by a socio-economically disadvantaged population that have been affected by the floods.
Since 2 September, our team of doctors and nurses have carried out more than 1,256 medical consultations mainly for fever, diarrhoea, and skin infection through two community-based mobile clinic teams. MSF also did WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) and mental health assessments in severely affected parts of Malappuram, Pathanamthitta and Ernakulam districts.
Following the high number of reported cases of leptospirosis, MSF also provided a support through targeted donations of doxycycline. MSF teams also sent non-food items such as blankets, floor mats, and hygiene kits at Idukki district to around 500 families.
In addition to the medical care, MSF has assessed the needs of WASH in several districts in Kerala and will provide support to the population in Pathanamthitta district and technical assistance to local NGO ‘Doctors For You’ for WASH intervention in Chettikad (Panchayat) Village in Ernakulam District.
MSF teams would respond in Thiruvalla block in Pathanamthitta to clean the wells and build the capacity of local sanitary staff & local NGOs.
MSF will continue sending teams to support most vulnerable and disadvantaged populations severely affected by the recent floods in Kerala and respond to their medical and humanitarian needs according to its assessments.