27 Aug 2007

PR# 2007-617

Qalat PRT takes medical outreach Afghan village

SHINKAY DISTRICT, Afghanistan – A Village Medical Outreach (VMO) held here by the Qalat Provincial Reconstruction Team Aug. 22 gave nearly 200 villagers a healthier outlook on life.

The people in the remote region of Zabul province were seen by medical personnel assigned to Qalat PRT and other military units stationed in the province.  The goal was to assess overall health in the village and to mentor local nurses who work at the clinic.

“We gave de-worming medication and vitamins to every patient,” said U.S. Maj. Debra Roberts, Qalat PRT medical officer.  “We noticed a lot of dental complaints here as well as abdominal pain, headaches, skin irritations and joint pain.  We were able to treat all of the patients with the supplies we brought with.”

The supplies were varied, including ibuprofen, eye-drops, coughs syrup, anti-allergy tablets, peroxide, creams and lotions.  Each villager also had his or her vital signs checked before being seen by one of the medics.

“The people here are happy with whatever help we can provide, and many times they don’t need much.  We see a lot of dehydration, malnutrition and minor skin problems,” U.S. Lt. Karen Nordine said.

Roberts has participated in four VMOs throughout Zabul province since arriving at Forward Operating Base Laghman in Qalat earlier this year.

“The toothbrushes and toothpaste we were giving out were a big hit with the locals - so much so that we ran out,” she said.  “We did show one group of parents how to properly hold a toddler in order to brush his teeth.”

The organizers of the VMO also brought along a few toys for the children; 58 of whom showed up at the clinic.

Contact Information ISAF Public Affairs Office
Tel: +93 (0)799 51 1155 - Mobile: 0093 (0) 799 55 8291 pressoffice@hq.isaf.nato.int - www.nato.int/isaf/