Primary needs are focus of MSF work at Asian earthquake zone

MSF is increasing its activities in both Pakistan and India-controlled Kashmir following the Saturday morning earthqauke in the region. The quake measured 7.6 on the Richter Scale and has brought widespread devastation.

An MSF team near the epicentre, establishing a health facility in the town of Lamnian in Pakistani Kashmir. All three staff members are safe.

Pakistan

The road between Islamabad and Muzaffarabad is open again and MSF has started assessing Muzaffarabad. The aim is to have a coordination 'centre' in Muzaffarabad and assist in the local hospital.

Cargo was being prepared for shipment over the weekend and includes; surgical kits; emergency health kits; ten dispensary tents; 1,000 winterised tents; 20,000 jerry cans; 50,000 blankets; chlorination kits; diesel motor pumps; ten water distribution modules.

In addition, MSF staff are en route and the tems are being reinforced in the coming days.

In Indian Kashmir, where the death toll has now reached 600, MSF assessment teams returned Sunday evening from Baramullah and Uri. Hospital facilities there are coping but are running short of beds and supplies. In addition, more injured from the countyside are now making their way to the facility.

MSF teams are assisting at the hospitals in Kupwara and Srinagar.

Mental health work has also started with counsellors helping relatives of victims, many of whom are in shock. A specific focus is on children who lost family members. Psychological support running in Srinagar, Kupwara, Uri and Baramullah

Primary needs currently are for shelter, blankets and water. MSF has already supplied blankets, food and water in the Baramullah district. In addition, MSF teams will focus on getting medical suppllies to district hospitals as well as the distribution of relief items into remote areas.