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Friday, September 21, 2007

Disaster training for medical officers

The Jakarta Post

JAKARTA (Antara): The Ministry of Health said it has established an international training consortium on disaster risk reduction (ITC-DRR) this month to better handle disaster response management.

The ministry's spokesperson Lily Sulistyowati said the consortium, which involves universities, hospitals, and health institutions, will provide training for disaster relief workers.

Disaster relief efforts have been in progress for some time, with ongoing emergency management training for 1,149 medical officers posted across nine regional crisis centers, she said.

"The training program began in 2006, and involves officers from Medan, Palembang, Jakarta, Semarang, Surabaya, Bali, Banjarmasin, Makassar and Manado," the spokesperson said Friday.

Training areas include disaster management, radio communication, emergency treatment, medicine and logistics management, rapid health assessment, advanced cardio life support, as well as advanced trauma life support.

Medical officers need specialized skills in disaster relief management, including categorizing patients, setting priorities and how best to deliver medical assistance.

Lily also said disaster response management, especially health services, facilities and equipment, needs improvement because disasters are often followed by various health problems.

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