IDF Field Hospital in Haiti Continues Operating
17 January 2010 , 21:27
IDF delegation rescues a man from the wreckage in Haiti
The first Haitian man rescued by the Israeli search and rescue teams. Photo: Ran Ladin, IDF Spokesperson
A Haitian woman gave birth to a healthy baby boy in the IDF delegation field hospital
A Haitian woman gave birth to a healthy baby boy in the IDF delegation field hospital. Photo: Ran Ladin, IDF Spokesperson
The IDF field hospital will continue to treat victims of last week's earthquake Video

The IDF delegation to Haiti will stop searching for people trapped under ruins in the capitol city Port-au-Prince starting on Tuesday (Jan. 18).  More than four days after the severe earthquake, and upon an evaluation of the situation by commanders of the delegation in the field and in Israel, it has been decided that at that time there will be a zero percent chance of finding survivors. However, Home Front Command forces will remain with the delegation for the next two weeks, assisting the Medical Corps in manning the IDF field hospital in the disaster zone.

In the meantime, the coming 24 hours will be extremely busy for the IDF delegation in Haiti. It is a daily race against time to save lives. In the field hospital that was built in the area of Port-au-Prince, members of the IDF delegation are doing intensive work. As of Monday (Jan. 17) the Medical Corps has treated approximately 100 injured people.

30% of the injured in the hospital are in serious condition, 50% are moderately injured and the rest are lightly injured. More than half of the injured are under the age of 16. The majority of injuries are limb injuries and bone fractures. 10 life saving surgeries were performed.

"We are working around the clock"

The director of the Haiti field hospital, Col. Dr. Itzik Reis, explained that the IDF delegation is also giving assistance "to people from emergency crews from all over the world – who simply are not capable of dealing with everyone who needs help and giving them treatment". Col. Reis spoke to Israel Army Radio, and added praise for the Israeli delegation: "We have all of the necessary equipment here, it is exactly like a hospital in Israel… and the career officers and Home Front Command personnel are working around the clock to ensure that everything works."

Likewise, Col. Reis clarified that the IDF delegation is working in cooperation with various different rescue teams. "For example, when we understood that the Dominican team is not set up to provide full treatment, we created an order by which they stabilize the patients and we give them the remainder of the treatment," he said.

In the middle of the destruction, there was much happiness earlier today (Jan 17), during the night in local Haiti time. A local mother, a resident of the capital city Port-au-Prince, used the medical services of the IDF delegation while giving birth to her son. The baby boy was brought into the world healthy and complete, under the care of Israeli doctors who were on location with the IDF delegation. As a token of appreciation and out of gratitude, his mother decided to name him in honor of the country that helped her. The healthy baby boy was named Israel.