Updates from Nishtar Hospital/Medical College Relief Activities
- Multan (Nishtar Medical College/Hospital)
// Click here for the Nishtar Long term relief plan
// Click here for the Nishtar Last Month Relief Efforts Summary
Salma Tanveer (Multan): the work is going on at a steady pace. we visited the construction site with Dr Haroon Durrani (President of NANA) on 26th Nov. i have put up the pictures on our facebook page, including pictures of the houses which are almost complete in Kot Addu area. Dr Jamil Farooqui from APPNA also visited Kot Addu, Sunawan and Taunsa area on the same day and met our base camp manager Mr Abdul Razzak in Kot Addu. we met Dr Farooqui later in the evening and gave him a briefing of the work being done.
in the area between Khanpur and Shah Jamal, the 225 houses registered by us for partial assistance and 50 for complete help were given all their required construction material by last friday and survey and registration for further houses was started. as i told you previously, we were a little hesitant to enroll more houses for help because of lack of funds. however, more people can now be helped because some of you donated more funds. i wish all of you who are visiting Pakistan this winter would take out some time to visit these areas and see and realize for yourselves the magnitude of devastation and the relief your kind donations are bringing to the people.
400 winter quilts (razaian) were made and distributed with the 400,000 Rs that our dear friend Dr Zahida Sabih had collected.
please continue to donate and help alleviate the misery and suffering of thousands of people.
dr salma tanweer
Salma Tanveer (Multan): There is a lot to share after our visit to the flood area of Bagh wali on the third day of eid. this place is a 35 km area lying between Khangarh and Jamalshah, we have only gone in about 8 km from Khangarh and surveyed in detail the requirement of rehab here, we didnot go any further as we realized that the funds we have will be barely sufficient to help only these people rebuild their houses. as i told you in my last update, this is a rather neglected area as there are hardly any roads here and the communities living here are spread out over a vast land. not many government funds have come here because of the same reasons. we decided that as it is going to be very difficult to refuse anybody who deserves to be helped and lives in the vicinity where we are providing partial or complete assistance (as needed) , we will have to limit our selves to a smaller area and try to help as many people as we can, there. it was also decided that we will do away with the verandah for the time being and construct only a single room house, which will bring the cost down to Rs 80,000 instead of 1,20,000, and we will be able to help more people like this.
40 houses have been selected for complete assistance (Rs 40,00,000 for all) many were under construction. 225 houses for partial assistance, out of these 130 have already been provided with 3000 - 6000 bricks (Rs 13,500 - 27,000) (one trolley has 3000 bricks) and we were pleased to see the work in progress. 95 houses still are waiting for bricks, which have been ordered. a single room house has a size of 18x12 ft. it has one window 4x4 ft, one door 6x4 ft and one roshandan 3x2 ft(all made of iron) the winters are here and there is a request for winter quilts (razaian) by every family as they have lost these in water. 100 were prepared each containing 4 kg of cotton wool and were distributed. 100 more are in the making, but these are by no means enough!! we need to get more. about 100 kg of meat was distributed to 100 families on the first and second day of eid-ul-azha. a mobile medical clinic was conducted by professor Inayatullah and co. about 200 patients were seen and treated in 4 different bastis. please see our face book link for the pictures. i would here like to thank all our wonderful donors who are helping us to do something for our unfortunate, suffering brothers and sisters. special word of thanks to the great pakistani doctors of north america, who have been generous enough to send us US $ 60,000 up till now which is almost half of the funds that we have collected. to our friends in Dubai, karachi, canada, thank you for all of your donations. may Allah shower his blessings on all of you dear partners and on your families.
Salma Tanweer (Multan): we have started rebuilding of houses in the flood affected areas. to begin with 5 houses are being constructed in kotaddu area. bricks and roof material have been provided to these people. they needed partial help as some of the bricks from their old houses were usable, as were the doors and windows.
the last 2 weeks were spent gathering information about alternative construction materials as bricks due to many destroyed kilns have become very expensive (one and a half times of previous price) prefabricated roof seems to be an attractive solution as it can be fixed quickly and the cost is almost the same as of the conventional T-IRON type.
we have contacted architects for their (free) advice, and also spoken to people already constructing houses in these areas like the Pakistan army, Imran Khan foundation, Rangers and Baharia foundation. we have decided to build single large room houses 12x18 feet, with baked bricks (puki eent), windows and door made of wood, roof either prefabricated (our first choice -- depending upon supply) or the conventional type. the estimated cost of this is Rs. 1,20,000, with the present brick rate at 4200/1000.
the people of the locality will be hired to make their own houses and we will pay for labour so that this can be a source of income for them. each house will be provided with a hand pump, (dug deep enough for safe drinking water). we would really like to add a shed infront of this room which will be a useful area (for cooking, shade, storage etc.). these people by habit have open kitchens and spend their entire day in the courtyard in the sun in winters and under the trees in summers (the boundary wall is made from mud & straw and will be done by them) adding a WC has been discussed with the local people but they have their own sanitary system, simple and useful and want to stick to what they are used to. but we would like to make a walled roofless small 4x6 feet area for the purpose.
all of this ofcourse is going to be possible if we can raise more money. the cost of room and water pump is coming upto Rs 1,26,000 -- this is the basic essential. we have enough only to make about 75 - 80 such basic houses right now. if we divide this and give partial help to people we will cater to more families but none will get full support. we are all against this idea, we all believe it is not just the number that matters but also that the people we are helping should have atleast one pukka room & clean water.
2 medical camps were conducted in Kotaddu villages by our doctors led by Prof. M Innayatullah, one on each of the previous sundays, and to their delight there were only 4 malaria cases, few skin infections and very few eye infections. no severe diarrhea was reported! weekly camps will still be done, if only to hand out antiscabies lotions, multivitamins and ferrous sulphate tablets(very much needed) !!
installation of hand pumps in Aliwala is going on.
i would here, also like to convey gratitutude on behalf of my team to all our generous donors -- specially APPNA, NANA, mrs mughees,mr fayyaz, mr hassan, dr shehla ebrahim,mr salman anwar, mr martin, our dear friends in Multan, Dubai, UK, Netherlands, USA, Ausralia, south Africa & canada.
Salma Tanweer (Multan): 2 medical camps were conducted, one in Aliwala, Muzafargarh on the 21st, a team of 4 doctors-- 2 from Lahore ,Drs Waseem & Owais, dr Shabaz & Dr Mubbashir Daha saw about 200 patients here. on 22nd a medical camp was done by the same doctors in Kotaddu and 500 patients were seen. on 23rd supervision of hand pumps installation and a very comprehensive survey for rebuilding of houses was done in Aliwala by the same team. Dr Shabaz Malik, said his goodbyes & is leaving for USA tonight. Thankgod his trip was safe and useful! we will really miss his zealous participation in all the work. (putting up pictures from his camera on our facebook link ! good ones !) hand pumps installation in Thaiti Hamza was completed and 6 were installed.
3 medical camps are going to be held over the weekend one at Rohailanwali and 2 at Kotaddu, inshallah. distrubution of 50 tents and 200 food packages (for 1600 people) whom we found to be needful of these on our last visit on Sunday would also be done over this weekend. (courtesy dr Zahida Sabih -- who is the only one in our team who can make people donate like this by a single convincing phonecall ! great zahida keep it up!)
we recieved about 25000 $ from APPNA & NANA, our house rebuilding would be starting soon, inshallah. these funds will be used towards this project. Dr Dure Sabih is on an official trip abroad and wants me to thank APPNA & NANA on his behalf for this donation. regards, Dr. salma tanweer
Shahbaz malik (Multan): Just a short update on my trip so far. Despite the hurdles, alhamdulillah I arrived in Pakistan last Tuesday, Multan on Wednesday, and reached in the flood affected areas on Thursday. While hearing and seeing the scale of the destruction on TV back in the states, only being here helped me realize that what has been done so far is just a drop in a very, very large bucket of what is needed. Since being here I've been in cars and trucks for hours and looking out of the windows in every direction there are crops and homes destroyed. The buildings left standing all have the stain of the flood waters upon them. Those lucky, smart enough, and with the capability to were able to move their belongings to safety, but for the vast majority even though their homes may have been saved, what was in them was ruined. Where I am in southern Punjab, the vast majority of people are subsistence farmers. They have lost livestock, and perhaps more importantly their Summer crops. Despite the oppressive heat of this time of year there are large tracts of farmland that is still underwater and unusuable. I've taken many pictures and have also have been writing a journal which I will insha'allah post for those interested when back in the states. I've seen many good people here in Pakistan working hard trying to help. What is needed is now is more people's time, effort, and money. In whatever way you can think you can help, please do. I truly believe it has been worth the time and effort to come. wasalaam, Shahbaz Malik
Salma Tanweer (Multan):in the last 5 days 4 medical camps were conducted one at rohailanwali and aliwala each and 2 in chakkar dari, Kotaddu. about 1500 patients were seen altogether, malaria is on the rise, and sufferers of severe conjunctivitis were numerous. skin infection and gastroenteritis are still around. rehydration salts were the most dispensed items. upper respiratory problems are also increasing. the conditions prevalent in these areas make me realize that this is a very resilient population, most of them living under the open skies, managing not to get sick!
Dr Shabaz Malik, from USA, has been with us since last wednessday , what a wonderful young man ! he never gets tired of working and doesn't mind the conditions in which he has to work and travel. he is writing a journal about his work here which he is going to post once he is back in Virginia by the coming weekend.
Dr Eisha Tareen, a clinical psychologist from Colchester UK also joined us for a couple of days and went to our medical camps with us, i have requested her to put up her views on how she thinks the flood affected can be helped further, specially by people who want to send help from abroad. you will soon read that.
water hand pump installation going on at a disappointingly slow speed as a boring of 50 feet is being done one plumber is managing to install one per day, as skilled labour is little in the area and employing a plumber from multan is expensive we are following the principle of slow and steady. i don't want to put in any negative information, but in the interest of transparency i think you all should know some of the disappointments that we faced recently, 3 hand pumps installed by us on bund sunawa were stolen the very next night !
We'd been requested to help a village which we agreed to do and consequently held 2 medical camps there. The team also handed some money to install hand pumps in the homes of 6 widows to the person who had requested the help - unfortunately on our follow up visit to the village we found only 1 such pump installed and this too was not in a widows house. we visited Qasba Gurmani, the water purification plant is working well. it is providing clean drinking water to a community of 10,000 people !
i will put up the photographs on our face book link this evening , inshallah. thanks for your help and kind support. it is your donations that help us to deliver to these suffering people what ever they need. may Allah bless you Dr. Salma Tanweer
Salma Tanweer (Multan): a long time has passed since my last update, a lot has been done in these days. our team has been on its toes all through out Eid, from morning till night, hats off to them.
-- clothes, shoes and food were distributed in the area of bund sunawan to about 800 people
-- 100 tents were distributed around Kotaddu area
-- an exhaustive survey for houses was done in 4 areas -- Basti panch murla, Baseera, Aliwala, Hockeywala(near Taunsa)
-- water purification plant with 2 tanks and a motorized water machine- sent from USA (Dr Jabbar, Louisville) - was finally installed in village Gurmani, which has a population of about 5000 people
-- hand pumps survey was done in the areas, need assessed.
-- medical camps were done in Hockeywala, Aliwala & Kotaddu
-- Dr Shabaz Malik, a physician from USA arrived here today to join us in our efforts. despite all my discouragement, he still had the zest to come. more updates tomorrow, insha Allah.
Salma Tanweer (Multan): sorry for not giving you the updates lately. my Chacha (uncle), Kunwar Aftab Ahmed, had a brain hemorrhage on the 7th of september, i was with him in lahore, sadly, he breathed his last on the 10th, we brought his body for funeral and burial to Multan in our ancestral graveyard. mean while the flood relief team has been working all through EID vigilantly, i do not have complete information yet about the work done, but a lot has been. i will gather details from every one and send them to you.
yours sincerely salma tanweer
Saima Tariq Khan (Multan): at about one month of our work, we decided it was time for another survey to assess the various needs of the flood affected people and plan our work accordingly.
5th September the core team went to Kot addu, with 7 young doctors and Mr Razzaq ( the great guy whose house is our base camp in Kotaddu) with many local people who are helping to organize our medical camps and distribution. we went to basti unati hazarwee (village 29000) about 10 km from Kotaddu, where a camp had been arranged in the outer courtyard of a mosque. an announcement a day earlier by the village mosque helped gather a large number of patients. on our way we saw 2 other medical camps working in the nearby area. this was heart warming. the medical team consisting of 10 doctors, started the camp while the others went with Mr Razzaq (the great guy whose house is our base camp in Kotaddu) to survey the surrounding area. the diseases in descending order that we saw were skin infections including scabies, gastroenteritis, malaria, eye & ear infections. surprisingly the epidemics have not broken out massively at all. inherent immunity? survival of the fittest, the unfit eliminated in infancy ? today more and more people with chronic ailments were coming to get help, like arthritis, hypertention, etc. anemia & malnourishment is so common in these people that even a shipload of hematinics would be insufficient. ferrous sulphate was handed out to all females. approx 800 patients were seen
The gynaecologist with us Dr Shuguftah, was thronged by grand multiparas with 8-12 children to their credit , with all sort of gynae problems. It angers me so much when i think of all the maternal-child health associations, govt and non govt, the women empowerment issues always the topic of a seminar conducted regularly in five star hotels in big cities -- what population do they target if not this one ? every thing is such a farce, if it wasnt we would be able to see some change!! The team that went for the survey visited basti manahan (4km), basti Kheri (6 km) , mauza Hala from Kot addu by pass road and Sunawan.
Need assessment was done at various sites. after concluding the medical camp and leaving 4 young doctors there, who were to stay overnight at the base camp, Kotaddu, we again split in two to visit 2 different villages in different directions. half the people went to Gurmani 10 Km from Sunawan, from where request for water purifcation plant had been recieved, the team found the need to have this was very real. food and medicine was not needed. a team of doctors was already doing a camp there. the other team went to thaiti Hamza from where we had received request for water plant as well as help with reconstruction of houses,(the most dangerous drive of my life on a narrow moth eaten road with 8 feet deep land on both sides) the need here was also found to be grave. food and medicines were ample for now. numerous trucks were seen distributing food all along the way and centers where food ration was being distributed with long queues were seen at 3 places.
6th September : we had a core body meeting to decide various issues;
1. food supply from now on after EID will be on demand and after survey. food is not an urgent problem now all the places visited by us people have stocks for 2-4 weeks
2. medical camps will continue twice per week
3. hand pumps are needed and as many as possible will be installed
4. people need help with construction of houses. there is atotal destruction as most houses were KUCHA. bricks are expensive in the area 5000/1000 as brick kilns are destroyed , getting them from other areas will be costly as well, govt is going to give some money to the victims but not enough to see them through. we are also finding out about alternate building materials. they will be the labourers for there own construction but a mason would be needed we have decided to provide material for construction of houses on need assessed bases, and we will see the progress on weekly bases
5. basic utilities are lacking, and need to be provided the team of 4 doctors conducted a camp in Taunsa further away , about 20 km from Kotaddu and 750 patients were seen by them. 3 doctors came back to Multan while our HERO dr Javed stayed behind to help the next team.
7th August - 4th September 2010 - Monthly Summary
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): dear friends, The summary of our work is as follows: MEDICAL CAMPS : We started our flood relief work on the 7th of August and a need assessment trip was made to Muzzafargarh & Kotaddu. Initially most of the roads were flooded and road access to muzzafargarh and Kot ...Addu was not possible, which were the nearest and one of the worst hit areas as well. It was decided that are medical relief work would be conducted with the help of the army as only transportation that was possible was with the army helicopters at the time. We conducted medical clinics in Jampur, Rojhan, Kot Mithan and Rajanpur which served as base camps, from where we also took boats to access more remote areas where people were stranded. This area is about 300km south of Multan. A large number of patients were seen during these first few days, about 5000+. Gastroenteritis, skin and eye infections were the most rampant. As the roads became accessible by the 23rd of August, we started our medical camps in Kot Addu area. About 10,000 patients have been seen and provided with medicine as required in the camps here. COOKED FOOD AND CLEAN DRINKING WATER : cooked food is being provided from the 7th of August to about 800 people who have taken refuge on bund Sunawan from near by villages. This was done via boat for the first two and half weeks until we had road access. We want to continue providing food here till the last day of ramazan. DRY FOOD RATION AND CLEAN DRINKING WATER: In this period we have provided dry ration and bottled water to 1000 families(of 7-8 members) for 2 weeks. each food packet contained 20 kilo flour, 3 kilo lentils, 3 kilo rice, 2 kilo sugar, 2 kilo cooking oil, 5 match boxes, 1 kilo milk powder, 400 gm tea, 250 gm red chilies, 250 gm salt, 750 gm rusks, 1 packet vermicelli and 2 soap bars. WORK IN PROGRESS: We have chosen 100 families who have returned to their flood damaged homes to provide tents to. With research we have come to understand that these people will not be able to reconstruct their homes for another 6 months and so are in dire need of shelter. With tents we will also provide plastic floor matting(chittayan). We will start distributing these tents on sunday. We will also provide 2 khais, basic utensils and dry ration to these people. We have also identified houses where we want to install hand pumps with deep boring to 60 feet to provide clean water. a 1000 suits for men, women and children are also being stitched and 1000 pair of shoes which we want to distribute before eid. MONEY SPENT UP TILL NOW : medical camps= 0.8 million IV fluids to DHQ Muzzafargarh= 0.3 million cooked food= 1.3 million dry ration and water= 2.4 million tents= 0.8 million beddings and utensils= 0.3 million clothes and shoes= 0.5 million in total= 6.4 million rupees have been spent. FUTURE PLANS : 1. Medical camps will continue for atleast 6 months or more. health awareness, immunization, treatment of chronic ailments, etc in 2nd phase 2.provision of safe drinking water, installatiomn of hand pumps. purifying plants. 3. rehabilitation -- construction material, basic household utilities 4. supporting means of earning livelihood we are very grateful to our donors, and thank them for their generous support. special word of thanks to APPNA & NANA. Dr.Salma Tanweer
04-09-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): two trucks were loaded by volunteers (students & doctors of Nishtar) with 500 packets of food . this was done through out night till sehri. these trucks left with our distribution team to Baseera and surrounding areas in Muzaffargarh at 6 am . Doctors Abdul Qadir, Dr Na...eem, Dr Mubbashir & Dr Shehzad went with these trucks to supervise distribution. this team was back at 3.30 pm a new team left for Kotaddu at 6 am. Doctors Yasir, Mujahid & Waseem. they joined dr Javed at base camp and then they set out with the mobile clinic to surrounding villages. a total of approx. 600 patients in one village and about 250 in the other. 100 Tents with mats and beddings were sent to base camp Kotaddu for distribution tomorrow. eid clothes are being prepared and believe me a lady doctor is also helping in cutting and stitching clothes for girls! we will pack these on 27th roza (7th sept) and distribute the next day inshallah
03-09-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): a medical camp was conducted on the other side of railway track in kotaddu, at the railway station , this was a badly hit area and water upto 7 feet remained here for several days. loss of houses was not so profound with a fallen wall here and there because this had "pu...kka" houses. but other belongings were totally destroyed. 750 patients were seen & treated here. an NGO donated 1000 bags of dry milk powder which was distributed by our team in this camp. skin infections & high fever were mostly seen. doctors waqas, rabia, sahar & mudasir came back to multan in the evening , while Dr javed stayed back to facilitate the new team. we had a core team meeting to decide the tent distribution & food supply . 500 food packets were completed for distribution
02-09-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): the team split in two, the Lady doctors went to Noor Shah colony camp, as this was als announced on the previous day a loyt of patients came. the boys went to Huzaifah's village Thaithi Hamza (Huzaifah is a LUMS graduate of 2006, very qualified, now works in Lahore -- h...e must be the hero of his village ), the camp was very organized and there was "purchi" system (pics posted ). 520 patients were seen. by 3 pm the doctors came back to Noor Shah camp , saw patients till 6.30 pm about 350 in number, this camp was also more organized today. every one seems to be getting the hang of it now. i speak to everybody several times in the day and i must say that not once have i heard a single complaint from these young doctors, infact at the end of our conversation they always say thankyou and it brings tears to my eyes, these are our real heros. who says Pakistan doesnt have a future !! these people amaze me to no end !! i hope to join them on Sunday and do some real work like they are doing !
01-09-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): 4 doctors left for Kotaddu in the morning from Multan with medicine supplies-Doctors Rabia, Sahar, Muddasir & Waqas. Doctors Idrees & Shams had come back the evening before while Dr Javed stayed back as it was his idea that he will be able to help the others to get to ...know the running of the medical camp, we agreed. soon after reaching Kotaddu the team set out for the days work. the first camp was at Moza Pirhar Gharbi, where 60 patients were seen. then they moved to Noor Shah colony, hee a camp had been announced for today therefore about 750 were seen here. a gentleman belonging to Thaiti Hamza e-mailed and said his village was in an urgent need of medical attention, lot of people had fever ! as our team was not very far away i requested them to take a trip to his village. two of our male doctors went, road to the village was totally vanished (pics posted) they had to go on tractors and also walked through knee high water. no medical team had visited here before, about 200 patients were seen withthe promise of coming back the next day with more medicine, time & energy. the team returned late to the base camp. in the night the boys wanted to go for food distribution for sehri, with Mr Razzaq's team, i did not thi
31-08-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): mobile medical camp conducted in Chakkar gari only 25 patients turned up( this is where we had conducted a camp on Sunday & had sen about 300 patients ) but this was on the way to Basti Sunawa where 500 patients were seen . then the team moved to Thaiti Hamza, where 200... patients were seen. the team after coming to base camp returned to Multan by public transport. diseases encountered on both days were similar, malaria, gastroenteritis, skin , eye & ear infections, scabies is rampant, scabicidal lotions are difficult to get we got our own sulphur creams made yesterday. lot of abdominal pain is being reported too. we finished medicines worth 1,50,000 Rs in 3 days though we thought they would be sufficient for 5 days, medical illnesses are more than our estimation, we are learning new things everyday and we have all agreed that medical care is our top priority.
30-08-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): Three mobile medical camps were conducted . the first one at Diara Deen Punha. about 400 patients were seen here. then tte team moved to TP Link & Muzafargarh canal banks , here many people are living since the last 4 weeks and is the area where we are providing cooked ...food daily since last 3 weeks(will continue to do so till Eid) here about 200 patients were seen. the third medical camp was conducted in Muslim basti here 300 patients were seen. an area of about 25 km from Kotaddu was covered
29-08-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): Dear Friends, At the end of the third week of our relief work, we were finally able to visit the area of Sunawa Bund where we have been providing food to about 700-800 people since 9th August. The first 2 weeks food was sent via boat from KotAddu to this area but la...st week it became possible to send it by road. Today we (11 people - 8 of us doctors) left after sehri (about 4.30 am) for our base camp at KotAddu. It was a 2 hr journey and the road was not too bad. When we reached our destination it was a pleasant surprise to see that the food was already being cooked. About 7 people have been employed to cook 16 -18 'daigs' (large metal pots) everyday. Today the menu was chicken pallau (rice dish similar to biryani) as Mr. Chohan (a generous friend) had provided enough chicken for all the daigs. Mr. Ghazanfar, who has generously donated his house to serve as our base camp, is a retired commercial pilot and belongs to Kotaddu. Our host informed us that the menu is changed almost daily. Our doctors looking after the food supply & distribution are a cardiologist Tahir Jamil and his brother Tariq Jamil (general surgeon). Both brothers work in Nishtar Hospital and since they belong to this area their family, again very generously, extend all logistical support to the team in this area. It was a pleasure for our team to observe our young volunteers actively working about the place. Food, once prepared, is packed into bags & taken on a 'dala' along with water bottles and distributed by all of these volunteers. From our base camp we visited a house in Chakkar Dari where a medical camp was set up - patients had been informed a day earlier by loud speaker announcements to be at the place by 10 am. We reached the camp at 9.45am where there were many patients lined up. 70% were women and children. Fever (malaria) and gastroenteritis were the most frequent diseases seen. All the women and most of the children were anemic , our supply of iron tablets ran out but as this camp is to continue for 2 more days supplies will be sent tomorrow morning & the ladies were told to come back for their iron pills. ORS, antibiotics, antimalarials, paracetamol, antibacterial eye drops, scabicidal lotions and skin ointments were the most dispensed items. Mosquito repellants were also dispensed - one bottle per family - the use was explained & you should have seen the disbelief on their faces that a liquid could keep them safe from mosquito bites!! These repellants are very expensive Rs 68 - 90 /50 ml bottle, and are very much needed, as are mosquito nets (macahardani) Rs 400 -500 each. 300 patients were treated today. The most eye-opening part of our visit was the journey along the flooded TP canal & Muzaffargarh canal to Sunawa Bund. This was the first time most of us were going to the area where we were had been sending food. The road was in a terrible condition, the one car with us had a little difficulty but the 4x4 wheel drive vehicles were ok. At places there was no road at all but large stones instead. Most of it was 'Kacha rasta' (dirt road) and all along the canal bank we saw hundreds of families, few had good tents some had only plastic sheets & some were residing under trees. They have been living like this for the last one month The first time our team found them stranded here was by a boat and they had not eaten for the last 6 days!! The feeble hearted amongst us, a friend from the UK and a lady doctor could not hold back their tears when they saw the plight of these people. Old folks with white hair & many wrinkles, pregnant & nursing, unhealthy & pale looking mothers, hoards of small bare foot children, in the hundreds, flocked around us as amazed to see us as we were to see them!! This disparity one day is going to bring a bloody revolution in Pakistan & till then we will keep neglecting this very impending problem. Almost all the houses we saw on our way for miles & miles were only an untidy heap of bricks and some wood from the fallen roofs, some broken windows & doors, surrounded by pools of dirty water. It doesn't seem that they will be able to start reconstruction soon. The people residing on Sunawa bund will not be able to go home for at least another 2-4 weeks, there is a flood threat till 10th of September, and there is too much water in what remains of their residences. One thing that we pleasantly noted was that charpoys somehow had been saved to a large extent, probably because they are light to carry and they are the only piece of furniture they own!! They managed to carry these across; another thing was the steel boxes (paitian) which were seen too, with almost every one. We were told that as they are made of light steel sheets these float in water when empty. That is how these were brought to a safe place. Surprisingly water hand pumps were seen standing tall in the house rubble!! But these will need fresh boring to 55 feet deep as there is water logging and salinity. Cost 6000 - 8000 Rs We returned to Multan just before aftari, with heavy hearts & busier minds. 3 young doctors were left in KotAddu at Mr Ghazanfars’ house so that they can start the medical camp at 9am tomorrow morning. Another team of 4 doctors, who went to Muzafargarh - Baseera came back at about the same time. They faced a lot of difficulties, but as a direct account is not available right now I will post it in tomorrow's update. Dr. Salim, a senior physician, visited Layyah with the Army to their medical camp, He was all praises for it, he said it was very well organized, neat & clean with good medicine supply! We were greeted by 2 pleasant surprises on reaching Multan, an industrialist friend had donated 100 tents of very good quality, and the water purification plant Dr Jabbar sent from USA had arrived! The team is motivated and ready for more positive work tomorrow, InshAllah. Thank you dear friends, it is only with your help, good wishes and support that we can achieve even the slightest good. Tomorrow I will try and post the pictures of our visit with the names of all our doctors. *Dr.Salma Tanweer.
28-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): 3 teams are leaving tomorrow for various medical camps. 4 doctors are going to Muzzafargarh / Baseera, 9 to Kot Addu and one doctor is going to Layyah with the army. Recieved a lot of donations today in the form of flour, sugar, mats, hand fans etc. In dire need of mosquito repellents which are proving to be very expensive. one bottle of 50ml costs about 70-90 rupees. will post a more detailed update tomorrow after having visited these areas. -dr Salma Tanweer
27-08-2010 - Daily updates
Saima tariq Khan (Multan): Army unit in Muzaffargarh/Multan base camps has had a recent influx of about 50 Army doctors. It was felt that our doctors instead of replicating their efforts would better serve the population by carrying out their planned work using the mobile dispensary. Today about 200 patients were treated with the dispensary. A meeting was also held in the evening to plan for further action. One of the water treatment plants donated by Dr.Jabbar will be arriving in Multan tomorrow which will, it is anticipated, help control and prevent the spread of waterborne diseases. Given the number of affected people in the Muzaffargarh area which is where we will concentrate our efforts, however, more plants would be of great help.
26-08-2010 - Daily updates
Salma Tanweer (Multan): today a team led by Prof. Inayatullah, went to kotaddu right up till the river bank, the roads were in bad condition and they couldnt go beyond a certain area. The journey to & from there took 6 hours. Lot of devastation seen, it is going to be a tall order for us to do our bit ! About 200-250 patients were seen, dreaded malaria has started !! many cases seen! scabies, skin & eye infections and gastroenteritis were rampant. food supply went as usual. more food items were collected and packaging went on as usual by the ever helpful volunteers of MINAR Dr Zahida Sabih, a very active & enterprising team member and , collected many generous donations today from friends; new clothes for 500 men & 300 women (more would be coming), 1000 kg flour, 1500 kg lentils, 100 chatian(floor mats), 100 hand fans, 1000 bars of soap, etc. our technician came back with training but with out the water purification plants , actually 20 of these have been sent, and we were told that these will be distributed via proper channel by the Health Minister, Punjab. Insha Allah we will see them working soon, wherever they are most needed !
24/25-08-2010 - Daily updates
Salma Tanweer (Multan): Click here for the details of our long term - 2 phase relief plan for flood victims Click here for the Nishtar Long term relief plan
23-08-2010 - Daily updates
Tanweer Iftikhar (Multan): Team of 3 doctors went via helicopter to Jampur . but dr Yasir, sounded depressed on the phone, due to change of army unit there was no coordination in relief efforts and our doctors sat idle in camp set up by army in a school. no work frustrated them . tomorrow inshallah would be a better day for them the army major promised. actually as the entire unit has been deployed for flood relief in the rajanpur area, they are having the initial problems of getting started, but tomorrow inshallah our enthusiastic doctors will see patients , our two water purification plants as promised by great Dr Jabbar from USA arrived in Lahore with another doctor, our ward technician is going for a 2 day training to lahore and once he is back we will be able to get these installed in muzaffergarh. each one costs about $ 2500 and can clean 40 gallons of river water in 5 minutes !! we need more like these, imagine what a difference clean drinking water is going to make to control & prevent water borne diseases, bravo Dr Jabbar!! our senior team members went to muzaffargarh on Sunday to conduct their own survey and to demarcate areas where we would concntrate our relief work in, as well as plan for our mobile dispensary working. tomorrow they are going to khangarh which is further off but roads are now open, they will conduct medical camp as well as survey the area for future work. tents are very much needed,temporarily, but once the water recedes people are going to need help to rebuild their houses food supplies as usual went on both days to sunawa area, about 100 dry packets for 100 families and cooked food as well the lady gynaecologists, dissapointed us a little as some who had earlier volunteered to go got their names out of the list, misinformation from somewhere scared them, as they believe that the arrangements dont provide enough security. we told them all this work is being done as best as possible under the given circumstances. we hope some senior gynaecologistss can offer their services, it is so much needed !!
22-08-2010 - Pictures
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): Pictures from mobile medical camps
22-08-2010 - Daily updates
Saima Tariq Khan(Multan): Not much activity took place today - as mentioned in an earlier post the new Army unit in the area has not continued the preceding units' routine of taking the doctors to see patients in isolated areas. Most of these areas are still inaccessible by car/truck as the water level has still not begun to recede. This matter will be taken up tomorrow - I request all our supporters to pray with us that this work can continue without break. Those precious lives that these doctors are equipped to save should not be lost because of delays such as this. Barring the renewal of transport into remote areas the doctors will have to concentrate their efforts in areas that are closer to Multan.
21-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): unfortunately the army unit we were working with has been changed and we had some problems coordinating with the new unit. Therefore despite having an enthusiastic team we could not arrange for them to go to the base camps today or for the next two days. On monday we hope to meet with the higher ups to discuss and resume the relief process. disappointing turn of events indeed. However we did manage to send 100 food packets for 100 families to Kot addu. A group of doctors will be going to Muzzafargarh by road tomorrow to conduct a medical camp and a survey for future planning. I am putting up some photos taken by our surprisingly talented dr Waqas. Please take a look. dr Salma Tanweer
20-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): Our team of 7 doctors and a lady health visitor saw a lot of patients today at the Rojhan medical camp. They saw about 200 patients, with ailments similar to what they have come across before. We experienced some panic this morning when we were told that there would be no helicopter flight today and that our doctors could not be brought back. We had promised the ladies in the team that they will be there for no more than 2 days. After a lot of effort trying to solve the problem, they were finally brought to Kot Mithan from Rojhan by an army truck and from there they were picked up by a helicopter at 4:30 pm and brought home safely, Thank God. 200 packets of dry ration for 200 families were distributed via boat taken from Kot addu, to the people stranded in sanawa and TP-Link area. Also cooked food is being sent daily to the people in sanawa as per usual.
19-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): A very fruitful day indeed!! today there were 8 of our medical personel working in various medical camps. dr Saadat & dr. Mashaal worked in Rojhan camp set up in commerce college. they saw about 300 patients and gave them medicines. Most of them had skin, eye & ear infections. there were a lot of gastroenteritis cases , most could be treated with oral antibiotics and rehydration solutions which our team had in ample amount. some were given intravenous treatment with antibiotics and fluids.
Dr Waqas & Dr Javed had a more adventurous and tough day. they were taken by army boats to various places along River Indus.. small villages, mach goth, bubli, kin & others. it was a 6 hour journey. they stopped at these places as needed, some of the islands had only one or two houses surrounded by neck deep water. this was the first time anyone was visiting them. People had secured themselves by building self made blockades, thus preventing water from coming into their homes. they were hungry and thirsty but refused to be evacuated by the army and would not even send their women & children to safer places though army had taken 2 boats for the purpose of rescue, and 1 with supplies. food packets and clean drinking water were given at each of these places which will be sufficient for 1 week. the most amazing thing was that they were totally without any aid and had managed to survive on their own. our doctors said they had never in their lives experienced such misery. Skin, eye and ear infections here too were the most frequently seen ailments. also cases of gastroenteritis were seen.
The gynaecologists, Dr Rukhsana and Dr Rubina and the lady health visitor along with our medical specialist Dr Abdul Qadir conducted a camp for women in Rojhan. About 80 patients were seen here. Dr Rubina reported that most of the pregnant women she examined were grand multipara in their forties or older, each having atleast 10 to 12 children. They had no concept of family planning and had never in their lives seen a doctor or been to a hospital. All of them believed that children were a gift of God and so should be accepted graciously and more children that a woman bore the better the position she had in her community. Their husbands too vehemently believe in no contraception. These women were very anemic and were suffering from various vaginal infections, skin infections and gastroenteritis. overall hygiene was very poor and scabies was rampant. 3 of these women were full term but refused to be transferred to multan, they still insisted on trusting their dai's more than anyone else. a woman with a dai conducted delivery came with perineal tears that were stitched by the gynaecologists. the non pregnant women who came to the camp complained of menorrhagia and pelvic inflammatory diseases, some of them breathless from anemia. Thank God our team was well prepared and had large stocks of hematinics, vaginal preparations of antifungals, relevant antibiotics, even some surgical materials.
It saddens us deeply that less than 300 km away from Multan people exist without basic health infrastructure, no awarness of maternal health and family planning, as if they are living atleast a century behind us. we wonder what the political leaders and influential people belonging to these areas, the government in general and the many NGO's concerned with maternal health and family planning have been doing. These women and children are a true picture of our neglect and insensitivity.
18-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): Important information for people who want to donate - The recent and ongoing floods in Pakistan have wrought destruction of unimaginable magnitude. The people affected will continue to suffer even after the waters have receded as they fall prey to epidemics and malnutrition. We, the doctors of Nishtar Hospital are based in Multan; the worst hit areas are around Multan and we have decided to do what we can by providing food, medicines and doctors. Our efforts are now in the third week and we will continue to do what we can for as long as we can, several months if our funds last. Till now, our funds came from friends and family, informally and without documentation, but as we expand our efforts and continue to work, we will need to reach out to those who might need to donate through more formal channels.
The Patient Welfare Society at MINAR will undertake to receive and disburse funds through its accounts, coordinate the activity and provide audited financial statements to the donors should they need this. The Patient Welfare Society MINAR is an NGO registered in 2008 with the Director General Social Welfare, Women’s Development and Bait ul Maal registration authority, Government of Punjab, Pakistan. This society is purely humanitarian, completely non-political, non-religious and does not discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, nationality, gender or life-style beliefs.
As General Secretary of the Society I can assure you of complete transparency in our disbursement procedures and financial matters; as a Pakistani, concerned with the devastation wreaked by nature, I can assure you of doing our best to help in whatever way we can; as doctors with previous experience in the earthquake in 2005, and before that the floods of 1992 and 1998, I can assure you that we have the necessary infrastructure, network and local knowledge to effectively launch and sustain a relief effort. Should you wish to donate to our effort, our bank details are :
Title of Account: Patients Welfare Society, MINAR, Nishtar Hospital Multan .
Account Number: 04037900048001
Bank and Branch: Habib Bank Ltd, Nishtar Medical College Branch, Multan . Pakistan
Swift Code: HABBPKKA150
General Secretary PWS- MINAR
Tel +92 61 9200 252
Cell +92 300 635 1307
18-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): Good day today! four doctors finally went via helicopter to Rojhan in the morning where they conducted a medical camp set up in Rojhan Commerce college. Tomorrow two of the doctors will move on to Rajanpur, while the other two will remain in Rojhan. The best news is that our first batch of 2 female gynaecologists along with a lady health vistor, accompanied by a senior physician will be leaving for Rojhan and Rajanpur at 8am tomorrow. Praying for their safe return. Also we were donated a lot of IV fluids and other medicines by various people today, and cash by family and friends, thank you to all of them. Cooked food for the people in sanawa was sent as usual. Dr Zeelaf Munir, president of APPNA visited us today and spent a couple of hours disscussing and going over our relief work and future plans. We are looking forward to their assistance. A friend doctor Jabar from the usa has promised to send two large water purification plants which we will set up in the area of Muzzafargarh district as clean water is a dire requirement. Also we had a detailed meeting to discuss current and future plans. we decided that for the present we want to concentrate our efforts in Rojhan and Rajanpur because they are the worst hit areas and even though this area is about 300km away it has become accessible to us via a 45min helicopter ride, courtesy army aviation. When the road routes become accessible we want to adopt the entire Muzaffargarh area and provide medical services here through mobile dispensary for the next 6 months.
17-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): The team had to sit at the aviation base for hours today. They reached there at 8am and had to wait there till 2 pm when they were told that the helicopter was not given clearance to fly.. hopefully they'll be going tomorrow at 8am InshaAllah. With respect to fund raising today was a very positive day. Very big thank you to everyone who has contributed. Bags of dry ration were dispatched to our kot addu base camp which will cater to the needs of a 100 families for one week. cooked food was sent as usual for the people in sunawa area. Another 300 bags of dry ration were prepared by volunteers (doctors, students). thank you to everyone who helped out.
15 & 16 -08-2010 - Daily updates
Tanweer Iftikhar (Multan): Information by Dr. Salma: These two days have been hectic but useful our teams came back on 15th next two teams of 4 doctors will be leaving tomorrow morning with more medicines , the cost of each supply is about Rs 35,000. the food as usual is being supplied daily to the 700 plus people on sunawa bund. 7 km from Kotaddu; here i want to mention that this food is being arranged by our some doctors of Nishtar & their families, this food costs about Rs40,000/ day and they have been at it without fail for the last 8 days, the distribution of food by boat is being looked after and financed by some other doctors of Nishtar, Pakistan is proud to have such doctors !! may Allah bless them for their generosity and pure selfless khidmat. we recieved an SOS call from DHQ hospital Muzaffargarh, where 300 patients of gastroenterits had been admitted in 24 hrs, and the medical supplies had run thin, we sent medicines and I/Vfluids costing Rs 300, 000 immediately. it rained heavily in & around Multan and hampered our relief efforts to some extent.
15-08-2010 - Daily updates
Saima Tariq Khan (Multan): Text received from Dr.Salma this morning: It is raining continuously which is hampering the relief work - very frustrating. There has been a severe outbreak of gastroentiritis in Muzaffargarh and no drips were avilable. We are sending 1500 drips right now - still raining heavily.
14-08-2010 - Daily updates
Tanweer Iftikhar (Multan): our teams of doctors sent to DG Khan yesterday attended several medical camps today one team was taken to "Notak" about 30 km from DG Khan base camp towards Rajanpur , this was an army camp for food distribution, 125 patients were seen hereincluding smaal children.later on this team movedto "Jakhar Imam Shah" and then to "Sheru" these two areas have been completely destroyed about 80 patients were seen here, no waterpurification plant nor clean drinking water we are sending 1500 hundered bottles of mineral water of 1.5 litre size via army aviation helicopters the other team was moved to "Ghazi Ghat" by road then to "Gujah Bahar Seyal" base camp of army from here via boat a 30 minute ride to a place where 3 "bunds" were broken here a camp was set up about 350 patients were seen here. skin, eye ear infections were seen in a great number in all 3 camps due to dirty water and lack of awareness of the people who are using this water to wash their faces, also because of lack of clean water . people are sitting on these half broken bunds with complete refusal to leave to a safer more convinient areas making rescue operation even more difficult. the army provided food and set up tents for them. the doctors had to work under an open sky with a lot of humidity and heat around, one of our doctors fainted there but thankgod he is back in base camp of DG Khan now safe and sound. the other diseases encountered in the camp were malaria & gastroenteritis. antibiotic eyedrops will be added to the supply tomorrow, these were not in sufficient quantity today. cooked food was supplied as usual for the 700 hundered peolple about 7km from kot addu via boat. another success was that we were finally able to collect our ration for packets which will be prepared tomorrow. the people in the flood areas are frustrated and angry, they become aggressive at times , our doctors can only work as the army jawans stand around them for protection, and also its because of them that our doctors are abke to reach these remote areas, not accessible by road, we are very thankful to them. hats off to the army jawans and hats off to our dedicated doctors , we are proud of you sons ! reported by dr salma tanweer
13-08-2010 - Pictures
Amna Tanweer (Multan): Pictures from mobile medical camps
13-08-2010 - Daily updates
Maryam Tanweer (Multan): Today was a disappointing day for our team, despite all our efforts to collect ration to send to the flood victims we werent able to do so to our satisfaction. There is acute shortage of sugar, ghee and flour. Hopefully these items will be available tomorrow. Our team... of doctors with medical supplies were taken to DG Khan by army aviation helicopter. However they were not able to see many patients today because of some ground difficulties. We are basically dependent on the army help for transportation and to locate the areas where assistance is most required which was difficult to do today. Tomorrow the team will be working at four different camps. There were some achievements though .. cooked food was sent via motor boat from kot addu to the 700 people we are already feeding on daily basis. some of us doctors here in multan visited 3 local camps. 2 camps were for people from shahjamal. Conditions at one of these camps were quite dismal. There were about 135 people most of whom were infected with scabies and had other skin infections too. We have arranged for their medicines and food. The third camp consisted of people from kasba Gujrat. It had been set up in a school building, the conditions here were satisfactory. These people had evacuated their area before the flood hit. There were about 65 people, all in good health but needed food so we have arranged for food to be delivered to this camp for a week. We are thankful to everyone who is donating so generously, our efforts would be in vain without your help. - information collected from dr salma.
13-08-2010 - Plan for action
Amna Tanweer (Multan): Another team is being sent with army aviation tomorrow to the medical camps.
500 packets of dry ration will be prepared by our volunteers tomorrow which will consist of 10 kg of flour, 2 kg of sugar, 1 kg of ghee, 2 kg of lentils, 5 kg of rice, match boxes, tea, milk packets, rusks, salt and pepper. As soon as these are ready, they will be sent to our base camp in Kot Addu with the help of the army, which we will then distribute to the stranded people by us using motor boats.
12-08-2010 - Progress Report
Salma Tanweer (Multan): Our two teams of doctors are back after conducting three days of medical camps. One camp was in Rojhan, the other was in TP Link Canal area near Kot Addu. They saw and dispensed medicine and clean drinking water to about 1500 patients. They were able to reach remote and otherwise inaccessible areas thanks to the Pakistan Army, as they airlifted our doctors to these areas and provided logistic support.
However, despite these small successes, as feared by us, the doctors sent to the camps saw the beginning of an outbreak of cholera. Sadly, there were 6 deaths in the Rojhan camp today due to cholera. Very heartbreaking for our doctors who did all they could, however these patients were carried to the camp from far off areas and unfortunately arrived too late. God help us.
Photographs from today taken on site at the camps will be uploaded tomorow as the team of doctors sent to the camps returned late after iftar today.
Additionally, 7 km from Kot Addu towards Muzafargarh Canal and TP link there are 700 people to whom food was provided by us today, like the last three days. This place is surrounded by water on all sides and is only accessible by boat from Kot Addu where our base camp exists.
Also, as reported by our doctors, a lot of malaria, skin infections, insect bites, gastroenteritis and cholera cases are being brought to the camps each day. So our next team will carry more medication for these ailments tomorrow. Need for a female gynaecologist has been identified and we have requested the army authorities to ascertain security for the female doctors. After we have acquired clearance from the army, we will aslo be sending female doctors to the camps.
(Information collected from Dr Salma Tanweer)