20/07/2024

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Northwell Health helps send much-needed medical supplies to Turkey, Syria following deadly earthquakes

Northwell Health helps send much-needed medical supplies to Turkey, Syria following deadly earthquakes

BETHPAGE, N.Y. — A Long Island community is stepping up to help with relief efforts after the devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria.

As the rubble settles and the mission turns from rescue to recovery, Long Island’s largest private employer, in the nation’s second biggest Turkish-American community behind New Jersey’s, is sending more than 1,200 cases of medical and surgical supplies.

READ MORE: Another strong quake hits near Turkey-Syria border, rattling devastated area

Many Northwell Health doctors and staff have suffered personal losses.

“Living in the street. They are too scared to go into buildings with their families. There are still aftershocks,” said Amen Alhadi, a flight paramedic with SkyHealth.

Members of Alhadi’s family in Syria survived but are left with nothing.

“The amount of human suffering going on there is immeasurable,” he said.

READ MORE: New York City pizza shop owner heading to Turkey to help earthquake victims, loved ones after raising over $22,000

Paramedic Abit Soylu lost cousins in a building collapse.

“Not being about to help those people or just comfort them for their loss, it’s very, very hurting,” he said.

These health workers who help ease human suffering are reaching out across the globe.

Northwell is sending 22 pallets of trauma supplies, including dialysis kits.

“Things like tourniquets, orthopedic equipment to fix broken bones and crushed limbs, those things are in short supplies because of the war in Ukraine,” said Dr. Eric Cioe Pena, director of the Center for Global Health at Northwell.

READ MORE: Turkey-Syria earthquake 2023: How to help the victims

“We have done this many times before, and you can never do enough in this circumstance,” said Michael Dowling, president and CEO of Northwell Health.

The need is also great for medicine and prosthetics.

“I feel so sad about the children who lost their arms and legs, they have been amputated,” Northwell pathologist Dr. Onat Akin said.

The Consul General of Turkey in New York, Reyhan Ozgur, says with 100,000 injured, medical support is the most urgent need as 28 field hospitals are open, but monetary help from the public is still essential.

“Money has a direct impact on the ground,” Ozgur said.

READ MORE: Volunteers in Queens collect donations for earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria

“I think the psychological scars of this earthquake will last much longer than any of the physical scars,” said Dr. Banu Aygun, a pediatric hematologist at Cohen Children’s Medical Center.

The need for telemedicine and mental health care is predicted to skyrocket in the months and years to come.

Northwell Health also has a relief fund for the public to directly donate to Turkey-Syria aid. To donate, click here.