31 Dec 2012

New Zealand still to decide about medical help for Samoa cyclone victims

2:31 pm on 31 December 2012

The New Zealand government is yet to decide if it will send nurses and doctors to Samoa to help in the aftermath of cyclone Evan.

Last week, the Samoa Ministry of Health said it had requested the personnel because its staff were worn out coping with the demand from people affected by the storm.

The Ministry's chief executive, Palanitina Toelupe, says health workers have been dealing with an influx of patients with infected wounds and respiratory complaints while significant concerns remain about the dangers of typhoid and food-borne disease.

She says with the limited resources, the Samoan health authorities cannot be certain they have reached everyone needing help around Upolu.

A New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirms it has received a request from the Samoan Ministry of Health.

It says New Zealand and Australia are discussing specific needs with the Samoan Government and its development partners.