Libya: MSF sends relief materials and assesses medical needs of storm victims

MSF is extremely saddened by the tragic news of the storm that hit eastern Libya and the high number of reported victims. We currently do not work in the areas of Libya affected by the floods. However, an emergency team composed of logistician and medical workers is being deployed to Derna and is due to reach the city today by the road. MSF is in close contact with the Libyan Red Crescent, which is the main aid actor at the moment in Derna, and will proceed to donations of items that are urgently needed. 


The conditions in Derna are challenging as it has been split in two parts, east and west, by the floodings. MSF is donating relief materials, including 400 body bags for the deceased, 200 medical kits to treat the wounded (including dressing kits: disinfectants, compresses, sutures and bandages) and casualty care kits for 250 patients (including gloves, antibiotics, dressing and surgical masks). 


MSF's deputy operations manager for Libya, Matthieu Chantrelle, said a lot of actors arrived in the city with different materials, but this multitude of actors and its coordination was quite complicated for the needs. He said there was a big need for the management of dead bodies and for taking care of the causalities. “It seems that there is a big gap in terms of mental health. With the information that we have, no actors that are in place are responding to this,” added Chantrelle.


More than 30,000 people have been displaced, according to the preliminary estimation. Given the scale of the disaster, it’s likely that medical facilities were damaged and there will be a great need to restore access to care for survivors. According to our information and observations, local solidarity has already kicked in as usual in this kind of disaster. Upon arrival, MSF emergency team will assess the hospitals and the local medical needs so as to launch the operation as soon as possible.