Helping the injured at PIMS

Spent most of the day (a very rewarding one) at the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences, which is a medical complex spread out over a whole sub-sector (about 1 square kilometers) of Islamabad. It is where a large number of the earthquake casualties are being treated. The whole day, there was a constant stream of injured people being flown in by helicopters or brought in on army ambulances (I have photos, but haven’t found a way to move them out of my phone).

Though the numbers are great, there also seems to be no shortage of volunteers, mostly students, willing to help in whatever way they can. I was glad that they are streamlining the process and only allowing people to contribute after their details have been taken and they have been issued a volunteer card.

Once I got my card, surgical mask and a pair of surgical gloves, I set about helping out however I could. I don’t have any medical training or experience so I couldn’t do much in that area, but help is mostly required in transporting the injured, logistics work and running small errands. It isn’t easy to manage such things as feeding so many people and ensuring there are enough beds.

A young man from Muzaffarabad I helped move from the operation theater to the patient ward, had a number of broken bones and other injuries. I was afraid of moving him at first, but was soon told how to lift him up safely. Another woman had had her arm amputated. She was barely conscious so we had to transport her with the whole bed.

There is still a shortage of tents and portable beds, both for the survivors in the affected areas and the relief camps being setup here. Please contribute in whatever way you can.