Local group to head to Philippines for disaster relief

Local group to head to Philippines for disaster relief

BRISTOL, Tenn. - One group in the Tri-Cities is packing their bags and is getting ready to head to the Philippines to help with typhoon relief.

There is still a lot of devastation left in the Philippines after a typhoon destroyed parts of the country. "Usually in these situations the hospitals are just overwhelmed. People are laying in the flood, you don't know what you're facing until you get there. You just have to be prepared," says CEO of Christian Medical and Dental Association David Stevens.

Stevens is getting ready to head to Baybay in the Philippines to provide medical assistance. "We'll be staging medical teams go in and help with the district hospital there and the surrounding communities," adds Stevens.

Stevens says there are an estimated 12,000 people in the Philippines that have been injured and it's overwhelming the local healthcare system. "We're going to be taking care of whatever the needs are. It may be trauma from buildings falling to when the flood hit. It'll [probably] be a lot of infectious disease," says Stevens.

Stevens says there are five people in his group going to help. "We have a logistics person, we have a surgeon, an internal medical specialist, and a family practice doctor, all with experience in disaster relief," adds Stevens.

Stevens tells us they are taking everything they'll need with them. "Tents, sleeping bags, all the food that we'll need because there is no way of getting anything once we're there," says Stevens.

They are taking what they can in medical supplies to help the doctors and people in need. "As soon as we get on the ground we'll have satellite communication to give an assessment -- here's what we need, here's what we need to be bringing in, and the next team will be bringing even more stuff," adds Stevens.

Stevens says this is the best way to spend the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, helping those in need.

Stevens says the group leaves on Wednesday and will be back on December 8.

They are still asking for donations to help purchase the items needed and to help fund the trip. If you would like to help you can go to the CMDA's website and click on the banner on the home page for Global Health Relief. Click here for the website.

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