News: Ambulances boost Paktya emergency healthcare capabilities
Story by Pfc. Andrya Hill
BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan — The Paktya Provincial Reconstruction Team provided ten ambulances to the Paktya Director of Public Health, Dr. Noori, for distribution to medical clinics throughout Paktya province, July 29.
"The ambulance distribution was a long-awaited event for the Director of Public Health and other healthcare workers throughout Paktya," said Lt. Col. Carlos Halcomb, the PRT commander. "It represents an important step in increasing healthcare capabilities in the province, and connecting the people to their government through access to basic services."
Afghan national policemen escorted the ambulances from Forward Operating Base Gardez to a ceremony held at the governor's compound. The delivery was greeted with fanfare and celebration.
"Everyone at the ceremony was really excited," said Maj. Anita Chapel, the PRT medical officer.
"I think it hit home because most of them have problems with transportation to their district clinics, or the hospital in Gardez, or Kabul if they're really bad," Chapel said. "I think this was a symbol of hope for them; it will really improve their health."
Noori will distribute the ambulances to clinics and hospitals in Paktya that have been identified with a high-priority need.
The provincial hospital in Gardez will receive two of the ambulances, enabling healthcare workers to quickly move patients around the city, and transport patients who are in need of additional care to Kabul.
The other eight ambulances will be distributed to smaller clinics throughout the province, and will increase patient transport capability to those clinics and the provincial hospital.