On Saturday, 25 April, when the earthquake struck Nepal, I felt tremors in Delhi. I wondered where the epicentre was and within seconds I got to know from my Twitter feed that it was near Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. In a matter of few hours, I was informed that MSF in India was sending four medical and non-medical teams from Bihar (the state bordering Nepal) and a team from Delhi.
“Hey, if you all read or hear news about the demonstration and suicide attack in Khost today, don’t panic. We are all safe here.”
When my parents were raising their children, I am sure they never imagined that they would one day be receiving texts like these from one of their daughters.
It is moments like this that I fear most. A woman with Ebola is wandering around naked and screaming. A confused and potentially aggressive patient with a highly infectious and deadly disease – and all that separates us is my yellow protective bodysuit. I heard the commotion while I was working my way through the patients in the High Risk zone – the area of the centre reserved for the confirmed cases of Ebola. The screaming woman had left High Risk area and was heading for the Low Risk zone where MSF staff do our paper work.
I’ve worked with MSF for two years now. None of my previous assignments have ever been breaking news until now.
That’s a problem on many different levels. It’s a problem because no one cared about high HIV/AIDS infection rates in Kenya. It’s a problem because no one cared about the high infant and maternal mortality rates in Laos. It’s a problem because no one cared about the thousands of South Sudanese refugees walking across the Ethiopian border every week.
"Despite the numerous conversations I have had regarding the political situation, I leave not understanding how the limitations placed on Gaza are tolerated."
Martin blogs from the frontline of the Ebola outbreak in Liberia
Alison blogs about adjusting to life away from her MSF field work
"I don’t blame the parents, the traditions or the community. And I don’t blame MSF."