A devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit Turkey and Syria earlier this month. The earthquake was centered about 20 miles from Gaziantep, a major city and provincial capital in Turkey. According to Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the earthquake was Turkey’s largest disaster since 1939. So far, around 42,000 people are reported dead and thousands more are injured. Here’s how WGHA members and others have been responding to this ongoing crisis, and how you can help:
International Medical Corps’ team is providing emergency medical relief and supplies, including health, mental health, and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) support. Read more about how they are responding to the earthquake in both Turkey and Syria.
World Vision answers FAQs on the ongoing crisis and shares what you can do to help survivors.
In Turkey, UNICEF is working with the government to provide immediate assistance while also supporting search and rescue efforts and distributing hygiene kits, blankets, and warm clothing to children and families. In Syria, UNICEF’s emergency response focuses on WASH, child protection services, nutrition, and education. Read more about their efforts here.
The World Health Organization is supporting the deployment and coordination of emergency medical teams to deliver health care and surgical supplies to treat injured people and save lives. Learn more here.
If you would like to show your support to this ongoing crisis, consider donating to the above organizations or directly to Turkish Red Crescent, the largest humanitarian organization in Turkey.
Achievement in innovation
Congratulations to three students from Shree Ghyangfedi School in Nepal (supported by the Adara Group), who received third place for a disaster preparedness alarm prototype at a regional science exhibition. The alarm system automatically alerts communities when there will be natural disasters such earthquakes, floods, or landslides, saving lives by allowing time to prepare.
Improving gender-affirming care
PATH, along with USAID and partners, is working to improve gender-affirming health care in Vietnam, where such care has historically been inaccessible or unavailable. Although a growing network of clinics in Vietnam provide gender-affirming health services, transgender people continue to face stigma and barriers in the care they receive. As a result, the transgender community experiences high rates of HIV and sexually transmitted infections and low usage rates of the medications that help to prevent new HIV infections. PATH, its partners, and the Vietnam Ministry of Health are working to understand the barriers and advance gender-affirming and transgender-competent health care.
Join us for a conversation with International Medical Corps for our annual Communicators Roundtable! We will hear from Rebecca Milner, Chief Advancement Officer at International Medical Corps, who will talk about delivering critical health care around the world and highlight activities in Ukraine, Yemen, and Ethiopia, as well as the recent earthquake in Turkey and Syria.
There’s still time to register for the virtual event on Tuesday, February 28 at 4:00 pm PT! If you've ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes to save lives, please join us for this free discussion.
Global Oncology – a continued collaboration between Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center and Uganda Cancer Institute, implementing research with local, clinical impact
The Global Oncology program at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center works to eliminate cancer as a cause of human suffering and death worldwide. Their mission is to generate cancer research that has global impact and grow research infrastructure and clinical capacity in low-resource settings.
Through Fred Hutch’s longstanding collaboration with the Uganda Cancer Institute (UCI), and the commitment of faculty and staff in Kampala (part of the Hutchinson Centre Research Institute of Uganda, a Fred Hutch subsidiary) and the entire Global Oncology program, led by Dr. Edus H. Warren, research continued to advance during the pandemic. Most importantly, the overall standard of care delivered to patients at the UCI has been enhanced through the partnership’s collaborative research and training.
Over the past year, the Global Oncology program continued to study Kaposi sarcoma, breast cancer, and lymphoma, which are among the top five highest-incidence cancers in Uganda. Researchers evaluated liquid biopsy as an effective and minimally invasive tool in diagnosing and monitoring women with metastatic breast cancer in low-resource settings. Further, researchers and clinicians studied the burden and management of infectious diseases among cancer patients. With their colleagues at the UCI, they continued to prioritize training initiatives, particularly through the East African Adult Hematology Oncology Fellowship Program and National Institutes of Health training program grants focused on PhD-level training on HIV-associated cancers.
The Global Oncology program is committed to conducting research that has the potential to better understand cancers and improve how cancers are diagnosed or treated in Uganda and other low-resource settings. Additionally, Global Oncology looks forward to continuing its collaborative training efforts, including launching a new training program on cancer genomics and data science in East Africa, together with the UCI.
To learn more about the work of Fred Hutch’s Global Oncology program and the UCI-Fred Hutch Collaboration, check out their recent newsletter and annual report.
Around the community
Feb. 21: Attend the virtual remembrance of Partners In Health's co-founder, Dr. Paul Farmer, as friends and colleagues mark one year since his passing and reflect on his remarkable life, the lessons he taught, and the impact he left on the world through his words and actions.
Feb. 22: Join International Medical Corps’ team at the Ukraine One Year Update event to discuss accomplishments and ongoing challenges, share stories of hope and resilience, and look forward to the months ahead.
Feb. 27: Register now for Fred Hutch’s next virtual Global Oncology Lecture Series seminar with guest speaker Kingsley I. Ndoh, MD, MPH, presenting “Patient-reported outcomes: Leveraging medical technology to address the cancer care gap in underrepresented populations.”
March 9: Register for the Women in Global Health Seattle Q1 Gathering. In honor of International Women’s Day, we will host a panel discussion on community wellness, with insights from Ndudi Chuku (Executive Director of Mission Africa) and Tia Benally (Research Coordinator at the University of Washington School of Medicine) among others. This is a free, virtual event that you won’t want to miss!
March 14–16: Request an invitation for Malaria No More’s Forecasting Health Futures Global Summit in Abu Dhabi, UAE. This invite-only event will convene diverse stakeholders in the health, climate, and technology sectors to improve our collective understanding of health risks posed by climate change, jointly assess the implications for disease control and elimination efforts, and move toward consensus on policy and investment priorities worldwide.
March 16: Tune in to Seattle Children’s next Conversations About Autism seminar: Tips for Toileting. This series features experts and advocates who share their knowledge and perspectives on autism as well as helpful tips for supporting a child, adolescent, or young adult with autism.