This is the essential aid earthquake survivors in Turkey and Syria need

Trauma kits, blood-clotting drugs and antibiotics are desperately needed

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Follow the latest news on the earthquake in Turkey and Syria

Lacerations, compound fractures and internal bleeding are among the injuries suffered in an earthquake.

In the first 72 hours, it is essential that basic aid and drugs get to the disaster zone.

That includes everything from bandages, gauze, sterile surgical equipment and thousands of vials of medication.

Trauma packs bound for the disaster zone include bupivacaine, used as a post-surgery anaesthetic, metoclopramide, an anti-nausea drug, and neostigmine — an essential medicine given after surgery to help reverse the effects of muscle relaxants.

Grimly, disasters such as Monday's earthquake, which has already claimed at least 11,000 lives, require thousands of body bags.

There is also a need for paracetamol, tranexamic acid to control bleeding and vancomycin hydrochloride, an antibacterial drug to prevent infections.

With burst sewers and dirty water running through the streets, such drugs can mean the difference between life and death once a patient is patched up.

Dozens, if not hundreds, of aid flights are landing in Turkey daily to try to get aid to teams on the ground.

The UAE has already sent at least seven flights, including two to Damascus, carrying everything from aid packs to 4x4 vehicles and fire and rescue experts.

Around the globe, teams with expertise are being prepared to treat what will eventually be tens of thousands of injured.

Syrians in a Turkish earthquake emergency camp feel the pain of losing homes again

A woman sits on the rubble as emergency rescue teams search for people under the remains of destroyed buildings in Nurdagi town on the outskirts of Osmaniye city southern Turkey, Tuesday, Feb.  7, 2023.  A powerful earthquake hit southeast Turkey and Syria early Monday, toppling hundreds of buildings and killing and injuring thousands of people.  (AP Photo / Khalil Hamra)

“There will definitely be crushing-type injuries to manage,” Robert Blanchard, an emergency response operations manager from the World Health Organisation’s logistics team in Dubai, told The National.

“We have stabilisation materials and general surgical instruments and a lot of other general medicines that are used to treat those kinds of injuries.

“Once the shipment arrives, they will be managed by a local clearing agent through customs officials and handed over to the WHO team on the ground.

“They will then work with local co-ordinators to distribute the aid packages as quickly as possible to where they are most needed.”

While hospitals and disaster relief groups focus on drugs and medical supplies, there is a pressing need for clean clothes, thermal wear and waterproof jackets.

Temperatures in southern Turkey and northern Syria are below freezing at night.

"We are trying to reach those who are injured in Turkey, but also those in north-west Syria, so we have to cross the border to get to those in need," Mr Blanchard said.

“There are a lot of variables that need to be considered. We are not sure of the situation at the moment.

“As the hours go by, things will become clearer and we will have people moving in with emergency medical teams to assist local authorities.

“It is the magnitude and the sudden onset of this event that really was remarkable."

He said several countries in the region were affected and that people there were very vulnerable.

“There are a lot of refugees in that area and they are already suffering from a lack of shelter, basic health requirements, food and clean water.

“There is an ongoing cholera outbreak that has spread across the region. These issues make it immensely complex and a real challenge for us,” Mr Blanchard said.

Updated: February 08, 2023, 11:12 AM