Czech Army gives medical assistance in Basra
Radio Prague's correspondent Jaromir Marek has just accompanied the Czech Defence Minister Jaroslav Tvrdik on a Middle East trip, and among the places he visited was the Czech Army's field hospital in the Iraqi city of Basra.
Can you tell me what the military hospital now offers to the people of Basra?
"Since we have been here, we have been offering them humanitarian aid, especially medical and surgical tools, particularly sets for osteological surgery and for traumatological operations, too. We are also preparing some humanitarian aid, such as the supplies which are needed for the normal functioning of OPD tests and for the wards of patients."
Do you remember your first patient? Who was the first patient and what were they suffering from?
"I cannot say who the first patient was because I am more busy with organising the rebuilding of this hospital. But our doctors remember well a small boy who was totally burned by some chemicals, and he was among the first to be treated in our emergency rebandaging truck."
The Czech Army's hospital in Basra is on its way to becoming fully equipped, and it is expected that it will be completed within the next week. The Czech Army has also been cooperating with the medical services in Basra in other ways, and Jaromir asked an Iraqi doctor in Basra, Viktor Mohamed, about this:
What is the nature of your cooperation with the Czech Army hospital?
"We are now going to be helped more by the Czech Army hospital. They admit some of their emergency patients into our hospital, after they do first aid on them. "
Do you think that you could run the hospital without the help of the Czech Army?
"No, no. I can say that we could not do all of this without the help of the Czech Army, because they now protect our hospital from thieves, and they protect our hospital from people who exert political pressure. So our hospital now works freely, and we can say that it is getting better and better."