Direct Relief is in contact with hospitals and other healthcare providers in the Philippines, assessing the need for emergency medicines and supplies as information surfaces about devastating damage and loss of life following powerful Typhoon Bopha, known locally as Pablo, which hit the Pacific island nation Tuesday.
News sources report more than 300 deaths and several hundred injured and missing, mostly on the hardest-hit island of Mindanao, located south of the capital, Manila.
In addition to loss of life, severe infrastructure damage is being reported. Floods, mudslides, and heavy winds reaching 93 mph destroyed roads, collapsed bridges, and leveled buildings.
Edgar Claude Nadal, president of Davao Adventist Hospital on Mindanao, wrote in an email, “Right after the typhoon we went to the severely hit area. It was so devastating, a lot of people lost their houses and properties and even lives. We were one of the first to supply them with food and clothing as well as medicines.”
Nadal reported that the hospital has some existing medicines and supplies from Direct Relief, but the stock is being consumed quickly. He also said they are coordinating with nearby Valencia Hospital to respond to the emergency.
“We are so blessed to have Direct Relief as partners to help those who are in need,” he wrote, adding that medicines and supplies have helped in previous typhoons and earthquakes.
In addition to ongoing shipments of medicine and medical supplies, Direct Relief supported past emergency response efforts in the Philippines, including Typhoon Ketsana in 2009 and severe flooding in 2012.