M'sian doctor couple offers free medical services to flood victims despite losing their own clinic

The couple said they have been offering free medical services since the first day of the flood.

Jean Chien Tay | December 28, 2021, 03:14 PM

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Even after losing their clinic to the recent flood in Malaysia, doctor couple Shalini Devi Ramachandran and Yuveneswara Murti are offering free services to flood victims at a temporary mobile clinic set up outside of their original clinic.

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The general practitioners have incurred losses of about RM850,000 (S$275,772) due to the damage from the flood, The Vibes reported.

According to Shalini, she and her husband have been offering free medical consultations and treatment since the first day of the flood.

However, they only managed to set up their mobile clinic on Dec. 26, after the waters receded and donations of medical supplies began to arrive.

Eight states have been affected by the recent floods in Malaysia, and the secretary-general of Malaysia's Environment and Water Ministry previously said the heavy downpour that continued for 24 hours was a "once in a 100-year" weather event.

As of Dec. 27, 48 people have lost their lives due to the floods, while five people are still missing, Free Malaysia Today reported.

Medical equipment damaged

Medical equipment at the couple's clinic such as the X-ray, ultrasound and electrocardiogram (ECG) machines have been damaged as a result of the flood, The Vibes reported.

Additionally, three rooms full of medications, desktops, monitors, mobile phones, and furniture were also damaged, and their clinic is reportedly uninsured.

Plan to operate for about 20 days

Speaking to The Vibes, Shalini said she and her husband decided to set up a temporary mobile clinic outside of their permanent one until they can refurbish the latter.

Shalini disclosed that they plan to operate their mobile clinic for about 20 days, but the current batch of medical supplies is only expected to last for about five days.

The medical supplies would be insufficient to cover the coming weeks, and her temporary clinic is also in dire need of nebulisers, sterilisers, intravenous therapy equipment, cardiac beds, and creams for skin conditions.

Another mobile clinic in the area run by the Malaysian Ministry of Health (KKM) reportedly ceased operations on Dec. 26.

Called for more volunteer doctors

Due to the increasing number of patients, Shalini called for more doctors to volunteer their time and join her and her husband in running the mobile clinic, The Vibes reported.

She said most of her patients required wound treatments, while some were in need of medications for chronic diseases like diabetes and hypertension, after losing their medications in the floods.

The doctor added that some of her patients also appeared to have difficulties with breathing.

She further said that residents have no choice but to seek help from her mobile clinic as their vehicles have been damaged

With many vehicles belonging to flood victims damaged and affecting their mobility, Dr Shalini said residents have no choice but to seek help from her mobile clinic.

Yet to receive help from the government

According to The Vibes, Shalini said the mobile clinic is "surviving based on donations from the public", and they have yet to receive any help from the Malaysian government.

The general practitioner disclosed that the donations received by the mobile clinic were from individuals and private organisations like the Penang Hindu Association and Klinik Derma Sivasanta.

The coordinator for both organisations said they decided to co-sponsor the cost of 44 kinds of urgent medicines after understanding the urgency and seriousness of the situation.

Those in Malaysia who wish to volunteer or donate directly to Dr Shalini and her husband can contact her through WhatsApp at 010-764-8078.

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