The components of an Emergency Field Hospital that Samaritan’s Purse airlifted from North Carolina have landed in Iraq, and will soon be assembled. The hospital, which is being established in partnership with the Iraqi Ministry of Health, will by staffed by Samaritan’s Purse medical personnel and volunteers who will treat those injured during the fight to liberate Mosul and the surrounding area, which has been controlled by ISIS terrorists for two years.
Since October 2016, a large military coalition led by the Iraqi army has been liberating towns on the Nineveh plains and other areas around Mosul. Some neighborhoods inside Mosul have also been freed, but the offensive’s progress within the city limits has been hampered by ISIS brutality and the nature of street-to-street combat. More than 100,000 people-about half of whom are children-have been displaced by the months-long offensive. Many are fleeing with only the clothes on their backs and find themselves in desperate need of medical care and emergency aid.
Our field hospital will be located in Bartella and is expected to be ready to receive patients about January 5. Located a little more than 10 miles from Mosul, Bartella is a historic Christian town that was liberated from ISIS control in October.
The airplane was loaded in Greensboro, North Carolina on Friday, December 23.
The hospital will span more than five acres and be equipped with an emergency room, two operating rooms, pharmacy, and about 50 beds. Joined by dozens of essential support staff, 40-plus medical staff will treat injuries from gunfire, mines, and other explosives. The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has reported an increase in these and other traumatic injuries among civilians over the past several weeks in eastern Mosul.
The cargo jet chartered by Samaritan’s Purse also carried 400 rolls of shelter plastic, more than 5,000 hygiene kits, and 5,000 cooking kits. Each cooking kit includes plates, cups, spoons, a five-liter cooking pot, and a seven-liter cooking pot. These will be distributed to those displaced by the current conflict, as well as to those displaced in 2014 and now returning to liberated villages.
Earlier this month we deployed a mobile medical team to serve alongside the Samaritan’s Purse disaster response team and national staff who are providing physical and spiritual relief in Jesus’ Name.
Samaritan’s Purse, in partnership with the World Food Programme, is distributing monthly food rations-supplies of salt, sugar, cooking oil, chickpeas, rice, flour, and beans-to tens of thousands of people at six evacuee camps.
In addition to food, we have distributed items such as medicine, clothing, shoes, bedding, and kerosene heaters to returnees and displaced families who narrowly escaped Mosul’s terror.
Samaritan’s Purse has been in Iraq for nearly a decade, investing in the lives of Iraqis through projects such as children’s programs and medical care. Our work has included providing emergency relief since 2014 to displaced people by ISIS.
Please pray for our staff and the medical personnel who will be operating the field hospital and treating patients. Pray that the patients we treat will experience Jesus’ love in a tangible way and that God would provide opportunities to share the Good News with hurting people.
Help families in the Middle East who have been displaced as a result of violent conflict and religious persecution receive the physical and spiritual aid they so desperately need to cope with the resulting poverty and trauma.