IOM Iraq Provides Medical Assistance to Earthquake-Affected Families

Sulaymaniyah – On Monday, 13 November an IOM Iraq Mobile Medical Team arrived in Kani Bardina village, Warmawa district, to provide medical assistance to families, following an earthquake of 7.3 on the Richter scale the previous evening, which struck 32 kilometres from the city of Halabja in the governorate of Sulaymaniyah, Iraq.

Approximately half of the 40 homes in Kani Bardina village were damaged or destroyed in the earthquake.

The IOM Mobile Medical Team is providing assistance in response to a request from the Joint Crisis Coordination Centre of the Kurdistan Regional Government of Iraq, for medical support in the area to assist those who were injured in the earthquake. The team is receiving guidance from local health authorities.

In Kani Bardina, the Team provided primary health consultations for adults and children, and tests, treatment and medication for chronic diseases such as diabetes and asthma. The few cases needing further treatment were referred to Sulaymaniyah hospital and to Halabja hospital – which was also damaged in the earthquake.

The IOM Mobile Medical Team visited Halabja Hospital, which during the earthquake sustained damage to the ceiling, floor, and walls, with blocks falling onto empty hospital beds. The hospital’s director Dr. Ranj Zangana explained that throughout yesterday they continued to provide services for visiting patients, but those who needed longer-term care were transferred or referred to Sulaymaniyah hospital.

In Kani Bardina village following the earthquake, many residents focused on cleaning up their homes and yards, and improving their temporary shelters.

The IOM Mobile Medical Team spoke with and provided medical support to Jamil, 58 years old, and his family. He said: “All my family was sleeping when the earthquake hit. We did not get out of our house fast enough and then we could not open the doors, which were damaged in the earthquake, so my wife and I helped our five children to climb out the window, and then we climbed out ourselves.

“Our house has many cracks in the walls, it is not safe to stay inside. The shelter we had for our animals collapsed – we have lost seven of our sheep and a few of the other sheep have serious injuries. We are now living in a tent in our garden, which we used for planting vegetables. We need to stay close to our house because we cannot leave the remaining animals alone; we depend on them for income."

Jamil added, “Today we received medical check-ups from IOM. My wife received treatment for her blood pressure; it was too high because of the earthquake. We hope to receive help to repair our house before the winter season begins.”

For more information please contact IOM Iraq: Sandra Black, Tel: +964 751 234 2550, Email: