Philippines: Doctors trained in treatment of weapon-wounded patients

Manila (ICRC) – Over 30 surgeons, anaesthesiologists and physicians from private and government hospitals are participating in a three-day training course to enhance their capacity to treat patients wounded by weapons or explosives.

The training course, which starts today in Davao City, will be conducted jointly by the Philippine Society of Surgery for Trauma (PSST), under the Philippine College of Surgeons, and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

“The objective is to enhance the capacity of health-care providers to respond more efficiently to the specific medical and surgical needs of people wounded by weapons owing to armed violence,” explains Beatriz Karottki, the ICRC’s health programme coordinator in the Philippines. “It encompasses pre-hospital care, triage, hospital care and post-operative care, including rehabilitation.”

Topics dealing with trauma management, such as assessment of injuries, wound care and anaesthesia, will be presented by specialists from the PSST, while the Davao Jubilee Foundation, a non-profit institution providing services to people with disabilities, will talk about amputation, physical rehabilitation and prostheses-fitting. An ICRC surgeon, Dr. Martin Herrmann, will share the ICRC’s experience in war-wound treatment and wound ballistics.

As part of its mandate, the ICRC supports the medical treatment of people wounded in armed conflict. In Mindanao, it provides assistance to five key hospitals and conducts various training for medical personnel. With the Philippine Red Cross, it organizes first-aid training for health workers and local government responders in rural health units in Agusan del Sur, Maguindanao and North Cotabato, and for displaced communities in Zamboanga.

The ICRC is a neutral, impartial and independent humanitarian organization whose mandate is to protect and assist people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence. It has had an established presence in the Philippines for over 60 years.

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