Doctors offer free medical aid for flood victims

Elill Easwaran

DoctorOnCall has provided free medical assistance to more than 2,000 people affected by floods. – The Malaysian Insight pic, January 11, 2022.

DOCTORS on digital health platforms DoctorOnCall and ePink Health are providing free medical assistance to flood victims in several states.

These doctors have treated more than 2,000 patients so far while paying for the prescriptions themselves or via public donations.

These medical teams provide their services door-to-door as well as in makeshift booths in flood-hit zones. 

DoctorOnCall director and co-founder Hazwan Najibm told The Malaysian Insight his team have treated about 250 patients on flood sites.

They have also provided consultations to 500 flood victims online.

He said medication up to RM80 per patient is also dispensed for free.

At first the doctors funded the efforts with their own money but as the weeks passed, they partnered with Pharmainaga and Global Science Sdn Bhd who sponsored dengue pills and influenza test kits

Hazwan said three doctors, two nurses and 10 staff volunteers have been deployed to Puchong, Karak, Lanchang and Mentakab since the beginning of the floods.

DoctorOnCall is Malaysia’s first online medical video-consultation platform that combines video and voice access to doctors and other healthcare providers in the country.

ePink Health founder and CEO Dr Suthan Kaveri said the medical app has provided free medical assistance to more than 2,000 people affected by floods.

“We have about 23 doctors involved in the flood relief programme along with one physiotherapy, two pharmacists, two nurses and one psychologist.

“We are grateful many donors have funded our programme as it has enabled us to  help many victims in terms of medical supplies,” he said.

The medical workers are in Taman Sri Muda, Hulu Langat, Karak, Cendrawasih and Mentakab in Selangor and in Mentakab in Pahang, where they offer their services door-to-door and from booths.

ePink Health has set up booths in the flood-hit zones of Selangor and Pahang to offer free medical assistance to residents affected by the deluge. – The Malaysian Insight pic, January 11, 2022.

Residents grateful for help

Taman Sri Muda resident Ahmad Asyraf, 51, expressed gratitude to the health workers.

“Most NGOs mainly provide food and there aren’t many that help in terms of medical assistance, which to me is crucial during floods.

“I understand that medical assistance is not cheap so I consider myself very lucky to have a medical booth set up near my place,” he said.

Sundra Murthy, 43, in Mentakab, said he was worried at first that there was no medical assistance.

“When I saw this group of doctors coming to help us, I was relieved for me and my family.

“Our legs were swollen from standing for hours in the water and the doctors gave us medication for it,” said Sundra, who drives a lorry.

Sandra Ng, 38, in Karak, said she was most worried about the Covid-19 infection as it was impossible to comply with public health rules and guidelines during the flood.

“These volunteer doctors provided us with self-test kits and we were relieved to be tested negative.

“We have already lost everything and the last thing I want to lose my family members to Covid-19,” she said.

Heavy rains two weeks ago caused widespread flooding across the peninsula, displacing tens of thousands of people and leaving at least 50 dead. Two people are still missing.

Selangor was one of the worst-hit states where thousands had to be evacuated. Widespread flooding was also reported in Pahang, Negri Sembilan, Malacca and Johor.

Malaysia is expected to face a third phase of high tide on January 18-21 and January 31 to February 3. – January 10, 2022.

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