The team leader of a New Zealand Medical Assistance Team (MAT) working out of Leulumoega District Hospital said they are amazed at the work local doctors and nurses manage to do with what is available to them.
Dr Scott Wilson arrived this week from New Zealand with a medical team of 2 doctors, 4 nurses and 2 logistics personell now stationed at Leulumoega District Hospital.
“The work that local doctors and nurses have done since this outbreak is amazing”
“They’re doing an incredible job under incredible stress,” observed Dr Wilson.
“It is very different to what we are used to in New Zealand,”
“There are a lot of difficult challenges that the locals are facing right now”
Dr Wilson said the are watching and learning from the local medical team.
“We are working with wonderful committed people and we are learning so much from them in just this short time we’ve been here.”
Dr Wilson told Samoa Global News that he believes Samoa should continue to focus on the vaccination program as the best way to combat the outbreak that has so far claimed up to 17 lives, mostly babies under 3 years old.
“The best way to prevent disease is vaccination, prevention is so much better than cure, and once there are sufficient people vaccinated in the community, then it is easy to stop the outbreak.”
“Once there are no more people acceptable to the disease, then there is no more outbreak,” he explains.
Dr Wilson says that the current rotation plan is that their team will be at Leulumoega District Hospital for two weeks, after which another rotation is preparing to come for another two weeks, if they are needed.
“So it could be a month depending on Samoa’s needs.”
He said there was also a team of New Zealand nurses and vaccinators from Manukau who will be here to help the vaccination program.
Dr Wilson said that they are working out excatly how they can be of maximum value to the local team.
The NZ MAT team brought with them medical equipment and medical supplies.
“We are really thrilled o be here, we are all islands in the Pacific, we all work together, and we are here to support and to assist,;
“We will do everything we can to support the local effort.”