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Tufts Crisis Mapping Class » Crisis Mapping, Disaster Management, Featured » Ministry of Health’s initial plan

Ministry of Health’s initial plan

PART 1: EVALUATION

As our group members came together to form the Moroccan Ministry of Health (MOH), it was clear that each person had many ideas to contribute, which created a thoughtful and productive group dynamic. When approaching an assignment as the MOH, we each assigned specific topics to each member to research and then met together to discuss our findings. Not only did this provide us with multiple perspectives on the case study, but it also ensured that we were knowledgeable about the history and geography of Morocco, the health consequences of earthquakes and floods, and the response process of other areas that had gone through a similar disaster. We used this information to collectively create a basic response plan and complete the assigned tasks for that week.

The biggest problem we encountered as a group of students was scheduling meetings that were feasible for all our members. As a group of students from different years, each person has a different schedule and a variety of commitments that made scheduling difficult. Acting as the Ministry of Health, we ran into few different obstacles while completing our tasks and constructing our response timeline. We realized that as the MOH was more of a policy-based organization rather than action-based organization we had relatively few resources at our immediate disposal. We also recognized that we would need the assistance of other aid groups, such as the Moroccan Red Crescent, for much needed medical supplies and volunteers. Our group initially thought that as the Ministry of Health in the disaster-affected country we would be responsible for managing and directing the entire earthquake response. However, the problem we encountered was that we could not realistically control the many different variables of disaster response, nor did we have the experience to do so. Instead, we decided to regard the other actors in the disaster response not as subsidiaries, but as partners. This decision also required us to reconsider our own role within the crisis response and determine our boundaries.

PART II: PROGRAM DESIGN

We at the Moroccan Ministry of Health intend to focus our efforts on the injured and most vulnerable people in the affected area around Rabat and Sale. Due to the fact that our main concern is the health of the population, we will target the people with the most immediate injuries and health-related problems such as broken limbs and instances of disease. Issues such as water and food distribution will be the responsibilities of other organizations.

Our primary goal is to address the medical and public health concerns of the severely affected populations following the earthquake. Our overall plan is to provide emergency health care to those injured or most vulnerable and to implement public health services to the affected areas. To provide immediate care, we will mobilize and bolster the resources of the existing medical infrastructure as well as assemble a temporary network of medical health care volunteers in collaboration with other institutions to facilitate patient triage and transport. We will also implement a disease prevention program aimed at facilitating public health by targeting the areas where water and vector-borne diseases could arise and install sanitation systems in all IDP camps. Our public health goal will operate in conjunction with our monitoring systems, as we will use crisis mapping tools to track disease outbreaks and the efficacy of our programs.

As our medical and health programs progress, we will need frequent resource replenishments to aid in the treatment of and prevention of injuries and diseases. These supplies include, but are not limited to: vaccines, bandages, clean beds and blankets, clean water, iodine tablets, medical tents, mosquito netting (ITNs), medications, oral rehydration therapy salts (ORT), and splints.

TIMELINE:

Day 0
Begin salvaging from damaged/destroyed hospitals, mobilizing private doctors/nurses and health clinics
Set up (in coordination with the MRC) first aid stations with referral capabilities

Day 1-9
Begin distributing water and water treatment supplies
Augment previous clinics with new supplies and staff as they become available

Day 4 Onward
Start providing medical care to the area by creating new clinics and moving into IDPs
Begin monitoring water distribution programs
Utilize SMS program and eye-witness accounts to distribute resources
Look into evacuating some casualties to Casablanca, etc. to lessen pressure on hospitals as roads clear

Day 10 Onward
Begin transitioning to postoperative care and away from surgeries and infection-related care
Focus on securing more bed space for survivors

Day 15 Onward
Post-surgical phase
Mostly focus on securing more bed space, expand using foreign field hospitals Continue evacuating worst injuries out of the city, continue expanding health services, particularly into IDPs

COLLABORATION

We plan on cooperating closely with both the Red Crescent, and the Catholic Relief services, albeit in extremely different capacities. As the Catholic Relief Services have never operated actively in the country before, we hope to partner with them in ensuring that their supplies are delivered to those most in need. This will include sharing information gleaned from our SMS and in person monitoring efforts in addition to coordinating the deployment of their medical resources. We would like to draw on the Red Crescent’s pool of local personnel familiar with the area in order to aid us by providing first aid, transportation, and resource distribution.

MONITORING PROCESS

We recognize that constant monitoring of the disaster situation is going to be critical in terms of ongoing evaluation and consequent adaptation that needs to be made. In terms of monitoring our organization’s progress, we intend to rely on communication with volunteers and medical personnel located in the streets, clinics and field hospitals spread throughout the city. We realize that we do not have the staffing capacity to deploy volunteers or staff expressly for the purpose of progress monitoring, and therefore will use resources that are already in place to constantly evaluate the situation. We will also utilize crisis mapping tools such as CrowdMap to track and visualize the areas of greatest need, although we do realize that a limitation to this tool is its relative inability to provide us information on whether or not the needed action has actually taken place.

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