UT Health physicians help with relief efforts in Nepal

May 19, 2015 | News, UTMC
By Brandi Barhite



A physician and two medical residents with UT Health are in Nepal helping with earthquake relief efforts.

Dr. Kris Brickman examined a woman in Nepal. He and two UT residents went to the country following the first earthquake to provide medical assistance.

Dr. Kris Brickman examined a woman in Nepal. He and two UT residents went to the country following the first earthquake to provide medical assistance.

Dr. Kris Brickman, professor and chair of the Emergency Medicine Department at The University of Toledo Medical Center, and two of his senior emergency residents, Brandon Stransky and Scott Hackman, arrived May 6, less than two weeks after a 7.8-magnitude earthquake shook the country April 25. They were in Nepal when another earthquake hit May 12.

The UTMC physicians are teamed up with the local Special Commission on Relief & Education of the Filipino Association of Toledo, known as SCORES. The health-care team in Nepal also includes two orthopedic surgeons, a general surgeon, an anesthesiologist, a pharmacist and several mission nurses, among others.

“We plan to go to a village around three to four hours outside of Kathmandu that has received limited medical attention,” Brickman said in an email from Nepal. “After that, plans are still up in the air. We have no idea where we are staying, but are prepared to sleep in tents that we brought to Nepal.”

Brickman said the team plans to go where the need is greatest. It has the supplies and equipment to be self-sustainable, so the team can set up a mobile clinic and procedure tent anywhere.

“We expect to see a variety of problems from traumatic skeletal injuries, head injuries and complications to existing medical problems,” Brickman said. “Most meds and supplies are for traumatic injuries and possible surgical procedures, but we have a supply of medication to manage a wide variety of acute problems.”

The mission was funded in part with donations from SCORES, UT, The Blade and a private philanthropy.

This is one of several medical missions Brickman has done primarily to Haiti as well as a disaster mission to the Philippines after the typhoon.

“It’s the right thing to do,” Brickman said. “As emergency physicians, we need to be engaged or lead these efforts to respond when the infrastructure of a country is overwhelmed in trying to manage a crisis like this.”