The Jewish state’s mission in the storm-ravaged Philippines has already treated hundreds of patients, averaging around 300 a day as IDF medics seek to offer aid in an area devastated by Typhoon Haiyan.
The work is part of a mission being called Operation Islands of Hope.
In addition to those treated, Israeli medics have also delivered 12 infants, most born prematurely. Other medical conditions seen regularly in the makeshift hospitals include dehydration and infection caused by lack of running water and electricity.
“I am not sure what would have happened if we had not been around,” said Lt.-Col. Dr. Ofer Merin, the medical manager of the field hospital in Bogo City.
The Bogo hospital launched Friday, after Israeli medics landed Thursday. That medical site has already become the central health facility serving the area.
The IDF has sent nearly 150 individuals as part of its rescue mission to the Philippines, as well as 100 tons of humanitarian and medical supplies. Israel also delivered a suite of incubators to help care for the premature babies.
The IDF says it will likely remain in the region for two weeks to ensure residents receive proper medical care. In the interim, the IDF is live blogging news of the mission, including photos, videos and tweets from officials on the ground.
Col. Dr. Dudu Dagan, IDF vice surgeon general, said Sunday, “Today we delivered three babies in one hour. Moments like these are the ultimate experiences.”
Meanwhile, IsraAID, an Israeli disaster relief organization, has also sent a team of medical and trauma personnel to the city of Tacloban, considered by many to be ground zero of the humanitarian disaster that has claimed thousands of lives and left hundreds of thousands homeless.
A second IsraAID unit also flew out to the region Friday.