One of our teams is stuck in the mountains. Yesterday we sent a mobile team to Liberty, a town that has been inaccessible since the typhoon. The only way in is by helicopter.
Luckily the town is OK. We’ve stitched and dressed their wounds and given tetanus vaccine. A risk of cuts and injuries is the dreaded ‘lockjaw’ an invariably fatal infection of the nervous system leading to slow paralysis.
It can be easily averted by tetanus vaccination at the time of injury. However the island’s vaccine stock was wiped out when the typhoon destroyed the power and the vaccines could not be kept cold. MSF has arrived with vaccine supplies.
But the clouds descended and when it came time to leave, visibility was too low. We maintain contact with the teams by satellite phone. The local population have taken them in, fed them and found them beds and blankets for the night. Even at their most desperate, people can be so kind.