March 24, 2015
In the city of Port Vila
At the Health Cluster Meeting with the National Disaster Management Office of Vanuatu.
Foreign Medical Teams from all over the world, international organizations and NGOs meet every morning at nine o’clock to report on the situations and exchange opinions.
Hitoshi Otomo, logistician, left, and Yota Yamagishi, a doctor, conduct an interview on the living environment at a temporary shelter.
On March 16, in response to a request from the Government of Vanuatu following damage caused by Cyclone Pam, the Japan International Cooperation Agency dispatched a survey team consisting of six members — one from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, three from JICA, one doctor and one nurse.
On March 17, in response to another government request, JICA dispatched a Japan Disaster Relief Medical Team to the country, with an additional eight members — one from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, five medical personnel (two doctors, one nurse and two pharmacists) and two coordinators from JICA.
On the early morning of March 19, the additional members joined the survey team in Port Vila, the capital of Vanuatu capital of Port Vila (on the island of Efate), and they all have been working as a medical team since.
The Republic of Vanuatu, located in the Pacific Ocean, consists of 83 small and large islands. In gathering location information and considering assistance strategy, the group confirmed a need for medical assistance examinations in hospitals in metropolitan areas as well as a lack of information of the actual situation on remote islands. Since the Government of Vanuatu in particular sought a survey of northern remote islands, the team has been divided into two, and has been working on investigating health damage and giving medical examinations on both Pentecost Island in the north and the central hospital located in Port Vila.
Other activities include investigations in the early stage into sanitary conditions and health management in temporary shelters. It was confirmed that no patients in need of immediate treatment and no suspected evacuees with infectious disease had been found. And sanitary conditions were generally being maintained well in restrooms.