Thai-Cambodian border fights force closure of 9 hospitals

BANGKOK, 27 April 2011 (NNT) – Nine hospitals along the Thai-Cambodian border have been closed temporarily due to the ongoing clashes while mobile medical units have been sent out to take care of residents.

As violent confrontations between Thai and Cambodian troops continue, Minister of Public Health Jurin Laksanawisit reported that the operations of nine hospitals near the border in Surin and Buri Ram provinces had been suspended for the safety of staff members and patients alike. The hospitals comprise seven tambon health promotion hospitals and two community hospitals. Phanom Dong Rak Hospital is now only open for emergency cases and surgery while Kap Choeng Hospital has had most of its patients transferred to other hospitals and has allowed the rest to go home.

Mr Jurin said five more teams had been added to the Ministry’s mobile medical units, which had been providing services for people at 31 sheltering centers, of which 23 are located in Surin and 8 in Buri Ram. Thus far, 7,672 residents have been given health examinations. Most of the sick were diagnosed with respiratory diseases while another major portion had problems with the digestive system.

The Public Health Minister has ordered special care for 16 patients who have a tendency to commit suicide as well as several others suffering from stress. He also indicated that no infectious diseases had been found so far and emphasized the importance of sanitation within the temporary shelters.

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