Australian Medical Task Force welcomed home from Pakistan

Seventy ADF members of the Australian Medical Task Force (AMTF) deployed to Pakistan since September have returned home today (Friday 29 October).

At a welcome home ceremony at RAAF Base Amberley the main ADF body of the AMTF completed their last official duties after an almost 10 week long operation.

Senator David Feeney, Parliamentary Secretary for Defence, praised the effort of the AMTF in providing assistance to Pakistan during the crisis.

“The Australian government and the Australian people are very appreciative of the dedication and skill you have brought to the great work you have been doing for the distressed people of Pakistan. You have upheld the best traditions of the ADF and of Australia. You have added to Australia’s high reputation in the countries of our region,” Senator Feeney said.

AusAID Team Leader, Mr Thanh Le said that most of the displaced people in the flood-affected Kot Addu area have returned to their homes, marking the end of the need for primary medical aid.

“Despite the devastation, most of the residents in the Kot Addu area have now returned to their homes and the main local government hospital (THQ) has returned to a pre-flood patient load,” Mr Le said.

Air Marshal Mark Binskin, Chief of Air Force said the successful combination of the Defence and civilian medical teams had enabled the smooth delivery of primary healthcare and brought emergency treatment to more than 11,000 flood victims.

“The whole of government effort to assist Pakistan has been very successful.

“While this marks the end of the medical assistance during this crisis it does not mark the end of our assistance to help Pakistan recover and rebuild from this disaster,” he added.

The 180 personnel forming the AMTF were deployed on Operation Pakistan Assist II. The Task Force comprised of:

  • A Medical Task Force including 36 Defence and 28 civilian health specialists.
  • Specialist engineering capabilities to support the delivery of clean water to the Task Force and construction of accommodation and other buildings.
  • Six RAAF C-17 Globemaster flights (14, 17, 24, 26, 29 Aug and 1 Sep) which delivered aid, personnel and equipment into Pakistan.

Aid stores and services delivered by the ADF and AusAID include:

  • 201 family tents; 9,126 tarpaulins; and 10 rolls of plastic sheeting to shelter more than 10,000 families.
  • 24 portable generators to safely provide power to temporary shelters.
  • 7,420 water storage containers and water purification tablets to provide 30 days of safe drinking water for more than 7,000 families.
  • 1,962 birthing kits to pregnant women to support the birth of their child.
  • ADF medical supplies to assist with immediate health needs.
  • Medical support in treating around 250 patients a day, totaling 11,375 patients.
  • Treatment of more than 3,000 cases of malaria.

Press release
Ministerial Support and Public Affairs,
Department of Defence,
Canberra, Australia

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