MSF provides medical assistance to migrants

February 25, 2011

MSF provides medical assistance to migrants © Christian Sinibaldi

On February 14th, a first MSF team composed by a doctor and a logistician arrived in Lampedusa. In collaboration with local authorities, the team is on duty 24hx24h to provide medical assistance to migrants landing in Lampedusa and to support local authorities in case of needs. At present, the majority of migrants arrived from Egypt and Tunisia are in good health conditions.

On Febrary 19th, a second MSF team composed by a doctor and a logistician visited other sites in Sicily (Pozzallo, Porto Empedocle and Rosolini) where migrants are transferred from Lampedusa.

“As a medical independent organisation, the health of migrants is the first priority. In case migrants presenting health problems arrive in Lampedusa they have to receive immediate medical assistance before being transferred to any other locations”, states Doctor Barbara Maccagno, Medical responsible for MSF operations addressed to migrants.

MSF is monitoring the situation and ready to reinforce the team in Lampedusa in case of unmet needs are identified.

MSF activities are funded by private donors and no institutional fund by the Italian government is perceived by the organisation.

MSF has been present in Lampedusa since 2002 and until 2009, with a mobile clinic managed by a team composed by a doctor, a nurse and a cultural mediator. The team was active 24hx24h in case of landings. During periods where the number of landings increased (summer) the team was reinforced with additional staff. The mobile clinic was set at the port of Lampedusa and was equipped with all the necessary medical materials to provide first medical assistance and to do the first screening of migrants presenting health problems. MSF provided medical assistance to 5.000 migrants.

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