AMDA Emergency Relief #6: Typhoon Hagibis, Japan

Report
from Association of Medical Doctors of Asia
Published on 24 Oct 2019

Since 16 October, AMDA has been providing aid at Marumori Elementary School in Miyagi Prefecture that houses 58 evacuees affected by the powerful typhoon that swept across east and northeast Japan earlier this month.

Meanwhile, despite completing its relief work on the 20th in Nagano City, AMDA was once again called to provide assistance for the resumption of a local medical facility, San-ikukai, which was inundated by the disaster.

Miyagi: After a week has passed since AMDA started working at Marumori Elementary School in Marumorimachi, most of the evacuees have been awake by 6:30am to participate in a morning exercise. As for the routine toilet-cleaning which used to be conducted by aid workers, the evacuees themselves are now prepared to take part in the work by 8:00am. Furthermore, the cardboard beds were replaced with low floor-beds for those who did not favour them. As a whole, the living environment in the shelter has been gradually improving.

The findings from AMDA’s daily rounds have been reported to public health nurses from the locality. On the 23rd, some of the evacuees who had problems with their teeth were seen by the dentists from the prefectural dental association. It was made possible as a result of an oral-hygiene assessment which AMDA nurses conducted earlier.

On the 23rd, two AMDA acupuncturists, who were dispatched on the day before, provided acupuncture treatment to the evacuees. Most of the six patients complained of pain in the upper part of their body (e.g. stiff shoulders) while sleep deprivation seemed to have been taking a toll on many of them.

That day, it was decided that AMDA would focus on acupuncture services for the time being and bring other activities to completion.

Nagano: Based on AMDA’s experience in 2018 West Japan Flood, AMDA is now working to support a local hospital in Nagano City in resuming its outpatient services that have been put to a halt.

At the time when AMDA was working in Toyono-Nishi Elementary School, a local hospital, San-ikukai, requested AMDA to provide advice and assistance with regards to the earliest resumption of their medical services. The hospital had been inundated on the ground floor but had longed to accept outpatients as soon as possible.

Accordingly, with an additional coordinator to join the ground team on the 20th, AMDA started handling the much-needed coordination work at a space allocated within the hospital building on the following day. Besides accompanying the hospital officials to candidate locations for a new facility, AMDA personnel have been helping to put the total hospital management back on track. As of today (24th), matters concerning the possible facility relocation have been thoroughly discussed by the hospital operators.

Throughout the relief, AMDA personnel have been accommodated at Tenrikyo Shinshu Nagano Branch Church.