Emergency Health Supplies Dispatched to Flood-Ravaged Communities in South, Midwest

Emergency supplies were packed and shipped to multiple healthcare facilities impacted by recent flooding and storms, including this shipment, bound for SEMO Health Network in New Madrid, Missouri. (Bryn Blanks/Direct Relief photo)

As flooding and storms continue to ravage the South and Midwest, Direct Relief is sending two emergency health kits, as well as other critical supplies, to healthcare clinics in Missouri and Arkansas. Each pre-packed kit sent has enough essential medicine and supplies to care for 100 patients for up to three days. The kits were requested specifically by healthcare facilities on the frontlines of the widespread flooding and storms that have swept through entire regions of the U.S.

In Texas, seven tornadoes struck the northeast portion of the state over the weekend in late April. Four people lost their lives in the storms. Mississippi also reported a spate of tornadoes throughout the state, including 23 tornadoes in the Jackson area by Wednesday morning.

Five people died as a result of intense flooding in Missouri, with two of the deaths occurring as people were swept from their vehicles. Roads and interstates, including I-44 through St. Louis, have been closed down to motorists.

Missouri Highlands Health Care contacted Direct Relief, requesting an emergency health kit to be used among their eight health sites. Six of the seven counties in their service area are affected by the flooding, with several clinics forced to shut down. Up to 25,000 people in those counties have been affected by the flooding, many of whom have been evacuated to shelters or the homes of family members.

Missouri Highlands Health Care has been coordinating relief efforts from their main site with the public health department and local first responders.

Direct Relief also sent personal care packs full of basic hygiene items, like soap and toothbrushes, to other partners in Missouri. Many of these kits were sent to SEMO Health Network in New Madrid, Missouri. Direct Relief partnered with SEMO after 2011 Joplin tornado and has supplied $1.3 million in aid since that time. Another clinic, Access Family Care, in Neosho, has also received support.

Direct Relief also delivered an emergency health kit to 1st Choice Healthcare in Corning, Arkansas, an area that has been inundated with flooding.

Direct Relief has been a long-time partner of 1st Choice Healthcare and assisted with flooding near the clinic in 2011. 1st Choice has five sites throughout northeast Arkansas, which have been impacted by flood waters and a nearby levee breaching into the town of Pocahontas. The town is the site of one of 1st Choice’s clinics, which was forced to close.

With more rains expected, Direct Relief will continue to send needed medicines and supplies to the hardest-hit communities.