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Shipments Depart for 12 Countries; Preparing for California Storms

Direct Relief's Humanitarian Activity for the week of 01/26/2024 - 02/02/2024


Operational Update

A 15-pallet shipment of wound care items, vitamins, cardiovascular medications and other medicines left Direct Relief headquarters on Feb. 2, 2024, for the Ministry of Health in Sierra Leone. Twelve countries received medical aid from Direct Relief over the past seven days. (Brianna Newport/Direct Relief)

Over the past seven days, Direct Relief has delivered 528 shipments of requested medical aid to 47 U.S. states and territories and 12 countries worldwide.

The shipments contained 4.4 million defined daily doses of medication and supplies, including cardiovascular medications, wound care supplies, vitamins and more.

Direct Relief Prepped for California Storms

California has been experiencing storms and floods from back-to-back atmospheric rivers, with the next storm expected to arrive late Saturday and continue into Sunday. The storm is expected to bring moderate to heavy rainfall, potential flash floods, and power outages. The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services has activated its Business and Utilities Operations Center, of which Direct Relief is a member, and the State Operations Center, to coordinate responses needed across the state.

A current snapshot of Direct Relief’s Social Vulnerability and Natural Disasters Map shows that 17 floods have been reported from the recent storms.

Direct Relief has offered assistance to CalOES, primary care associations, and safety-net healthcare providers. In addition to Direct Relief’s inventory of medicines, medical supplies, and hygiene items, emergency medical backpacks, hygiene kits, generators, and a pre-packed emergency health kit, containing 200 medicines and supplies for acute and chronic health conditions, are ready for deployment if requested.

Syrian American Medical Society Visits Direct Relief

SAMS staff tour Direct Relief’s warehouse in Santa Barbara, California, to exchange supply chain management insights. (Brianna Newport/Direct Relief)

On Friday, staff from the Syrian American Medical Society, or SAMS, visited Direct Relief’s headquarters in Santa Barbara, California, to discuss further ways to collaborate and share supply chain learnings.

The Syrian American Medical Society, founded in 1998, operates as a professional society in the United States, providing networking, educational, and professional services to medical professionals of Syrian descent. Its charitable arm, SAMS Foundation, established in 2007, focuses on delivering life-saving medical services, revitalizing health systems during crises, and promoting medical education in Syria and neighboring countries. Since 2014, Direct Relief has partnered with this NGO to help meet health needs in the region.

Next week marks the one-year milestone since the 8.3-magnitude earthquake and aftershocks struck Turkey and northwest Syria. Since that time, Direct Relief has provided $46.2 million in medicines and medical supplies to SAMS, which then supplied hospitals in Syria treating thousands of people with crush wounds and other injuries and medical complications caused by the quakes.

Medical Support Reaches Yemen

Yemen has endured more than eight years of protracted political and military conflict, high population growth, chronic food insecurity, and an uncertain political transition. In 2023, 21.6 million people required some form of humanitarian assistance as 80 percent of the country was unable to meet nutrition needs and access basic services.

Direct Relief shipments arrive in Yemen for distribution to health facilities providing care across the country. (Courtesy photo)

For the last seven years, Direct Relief has partnered with Yemen Aid, a U.S.-based nonprofit founded by Yemeni-Americans that deliver humanitarian assistance and build a self-reliant Yemen with dignity and opportunity accessible to all.  Late last year, two shipments were successfully delivered to Yemen Aid and subsequently distributed in direct coordination with the Ministry of Public Health and Population to public health facilities across the country with pre-identified needs.

Together, these donations totaled 17 tons, equaling 4,130,638 defined daily doses of medication, including a broad range of cardiovascular drugs, anti-hypertensives, antibiotics, hormonal therapies, and mental health treatments in addition to vitamins, wound dressings, and diagnostic equipment.

Operational Snapshot


Over the last week, Direct Relief shipped more than 2.7 million defined daily doses of medication outside the U.S.

Countries that received medical aid over the past week included:

  • Liberia
  • Fiji
  • Central African Republic
  • Cambodia
  • Romania
  • Zimbabwe
  • India
  • Ghana
  • Bangladesh
  • Morocco
  • Ethiopia
  • Paraguay


Direct Relief delivered 510 shipments containing over six tons of medications during the past seven days to organizations, including the following:

  • Austin Public Health, Texas
  • COSSMA, Inc., Puerto Rico
  • North Jefferson County Clinic Pharmacy, Texas
  • Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation, Northern Mariana Islands
  • St. Gabriel Eastside Community Health Center, Louisiana
  • Dream Centers Women’s Clinic, Colorado
  • Community Health Net, Pennsylvania
  • Texas Native Health, Texas
  • Good News Clinics, Georgia
  • Foremost Family Health Center, Texas


Since January 1, 2024, Direct Relief has delivered 2,114 shipments to 897 partner organizations in 51 U.S. states and territories and 35 countries.

These shipments contained 27 million defined daily doses of medication totaling 366,282 lbs.

In the News

Understanding the Ongoing Opioid Epidemic – The Kansas City Star

Ahead of Fire Season, Tips on How to Protect Home and Family – California News Service

AHA! Santa Barbara partners with Direct Relief helping teens – KEYT

Aloha and Trust.’ Native Hawaiʻian Health Care’s Response to Maui Fires – Angels in Medicine

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