E-DRUG: Asian Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster (3)
Although WHO supports donations in kind (Asian Earthquake and Tsunami
Disaster (2)), I think the context needs to be considered.
There are some current messages that back up the call for NOT sending
medicines. Carol Bellamy (UNICEF Director) is emphasising that cash
is now what is needed. Don't send any more things INCLUDING
MEDICINE!!!! Money is flexible and can be used immediately if needed
and later as well for reconstruction.
Dr Kumariah Balasubramaniam from Health Action International in Sri
Lanka has made the following request: "All these [essential items] are
available in the country. Please do not attempt to collect medicines,
clothes etc and ship them. Our national airport is clogged with Cargo
planes. There is no way an NGO can clear a shipment from the airport."
Dr Bala provided contacts and bank account details for 3 local Sri
Lankan NGOs if anyone is interested. Alternatively, UNICEF, Red
Cross, Oxfam and other reputable NGOs can receive money and put it to
..and from Tony Stewart a Burnet Institute epidemiologist staff
member working with WHO in Aceh:
"Unrequested aid is a major problem, a lot of it is under tarps in
JKT, while the essentials are airlifted. There's no spare capacity
to receive, sort, store or distribute There are a lot of aid workers
on the ground, transport and access are big issues."
Centre for International Health
Macfarlane Burnet Institute for Medical Research & Public Health
GPO Box 2284, Melbourne 3001 Australia
Telephone 613 9282 2115 / 9282 2275
Fax 61 3 9282 2144 or 9282 2100
Time zone: 11 hours ahead of GMT.
Site: Alfred Medical Research & Education Precinct (AMREP),
corner Punt & Commercial Roads, Prahran 3181