Chad: Red Cross surgical team treats first patients in eastern Chad as rising number of wounded arrive from Sudan
The team – a surgeon, an anesthetist, a ward nurse and an operating theatre nurse – operated on their first patients on Thursday. Working out of the University Hospital Centre in Abéché the medical specialists are helping relieve pressure on medical facilities in Adré and Abéché that have struggled to cope with overwhelming needs. A second surgical team and an ICRC physiotherapist will also soon arrive.
Most healthcare facilities in Sudan have stopped operating due to a lack of electricity and running water, as well as dwindling medical and food supplies, forcing patients in need to seek care in a safer location.
“The Sudan crisis is spilling over borders, and the resources in neighboring countries are overstretched,” said Jerome Fontana, head of the ICRC delegation in N'Djamena. “Gunshot patients often require long and complex treatment, including orthopedic and reconstructive surgery. When they arrive in large numbers, in most cases accompanied by family members, the pressure on hospitals is immense.”
Nearly 160,000 people, including more than 1,000 who were wounded in the ongoing violence, have fled the Darfur region of Sudan into Chad. The majority are women and children who become exhausted after days on the road. Red Cross branches in Ouaddai, Sila and Wadi Fira are supporting refugees, returnees and host communities, including by the building of shelters and water infrastructure in Ouaddai. The ICRC has been working with the Chad Red Cross Society to support families who lost contact with their loved ones. The ICRC has also been distributing essential household items and tents.
Since fighting broke out in Sudan on April 15, the ICRC and the Sudanese Red Crescent Society have been working to deliver surgical supplies to hospitals, help collect and identify mortal remains, and improve access to clean water. In addition, the ICRC has maintained dialogue with all the parties to the conflict in Sudan to facilitate medical evacuations of wounded people and remind the parties of their obligations under the norms of international humanitarian law.
Fatima Sator, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 79 848 49 08, email@example.com