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MSF Treats New Wounded in Nairobi
January 18, 2008
Over the past two days, 34 wounded have been treated in Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières’ (MSF) health clinics in Nairobi’s Mathare and Kibera slums. Among these patients, eight suffered from bullet wounds. Several wounded have been referred to hospitals.
It was in Mathare slum that the MSF team has received the most wounded these last days. Between Wednesday, January 16, and Friday, January 18, in the afternoon, two health clinics in the slum received 32 patients who had been victims of street violence.
On Thursday, January 17, early in the evening, three people with bullet wounds have received emergency care. When their condition stabilized, they were referred to a hospital by ambulance. Two other people with bullet wounds were in a less serious condition and were treated on the spot.
Later in the evening, the MSF team received a call concerning three wounded and two dead but could not go to them as movements were too dangerous at night.
On Friday, January 18, in Kibera, where MSF had reinforced two of its three clinics in order to respond to a potential arrival of wounded, two children have been treated for bullet wounds. One of them was 13 years old and the other one was even younger. Both had received a bullet in the leg.
MSF is supporting the Masaba private hospital to treat nine wounded people brought in on Friday. Four dead were reported in this hospital.
Patients suffered injuries from knives or sticks
The majority of patients, among them two women, suffered injuries from knives or sticks, some of them being very seriously injured. Several patients needed to be transferred to a hospital.
The facilities for MSF’s emergency care remain open in the slums of Mathare and Kibera. In Mathare, two health clinics were installed in the Blue House (the MSF center for treatment of people with HIV and TB) and in the facilities of the National Council of Churches of Kenya. The medical team of 15 (including 5 doctors) and 8 first-aid workers are based there.
Three ambulances go around the slums and respond to calls for assisting the injured. For the most seriously injured, a system of referral was set up with the public referral hospital and a private hospital. In Kibera, the Kibera South Health Center and the clinic of Gatwekera, where MSF normally offers primary health care and treatment for HIV/Aids, have been prepared for receiving injured people as well.
And MSF has organized an ambulance service for transporting seriously wounded people to Masaba hospital, where an MSF surgeon and anesthetist are supporting the staff since Friday, bringing in also surgical materials.