U.S. Pacific Command Provides Medical Training Across Atolls

Supervised by a U.S. medical instructor, small groups practice stabilizing the spine and preparing for transport.

Colombo, July 12: The Embassy of the United States of America and U.S. Pacific Command medical experts recently completed training for local doctors, nurses, schools, and the Maldivian Red Crescent in Kulhudhuffushi, Haa Dhaalu Atoll.  This is part of ongoing U.S. assistance to help Maldivians provide better pre-hospital care and medical skills to respond to natural disasters and other emergencies.

“We believe when American and Maldivian medical providers work and train together, both countries can benefit from the shared knowledge and experiences,” said U.S. Embassy Chargé d’affaires Robert Hilton.

The five-day program on Kulhudhuffushi included hands-on training on controlling massive bleeding, securing airways, maintaining respiration and circulation, treating hypothermia and head injuries, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and patient assessment and movement.  These effects can be even more drastic on smaller, less resourced islands due to long times for evacuation.

In addition, the U.S. medical team facilitated a donation about $11,000 worth of medical supplies and equipment to the local hospital, sea ambulance service, and other community organizations.  These contributions fill critical needs to effectively treat injuries and safely move the injured.  The supplies and equipment came from U.S. emergency response agencies in North Carolina.

Additional Maldivian partners included the Ministry of Health and its Health Protection Agency, Atoll and Island Councils, Kulhudhuffushi Regional Hospital, Atoll Education Centre, Ameer Ameen School, and Afeefuddin School.

This year the U.S. Embassy has already supported medical trainings in Addu Atoll and is planning a similar program for Kaafu Atoll later this year.