On Sunday, a delegation of officers and enlisted ranks of the medical corps of the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) landed in Romania to take part in the international exercise held in cooperation with the European Union. The delegation consists of 160 active and retired medical and logistics personnel who will simulate the setting up of a field hospital following an earthquake, as well as involvement in other ground and air operations, according to an Israeli Embassy press release.
The head of the delegation is Colonel Dr. Hagay Frenkel, director of the operational medical department. Colonel Dr. (ret.) Ofer Merin is the commanding officer of the Surgery-Hospitalisation Unit.
The exercise in Romania is the most distant exercise in which the IDF Medical Corps has taken part and also the largest exercise in Europe.
This unit, which took part in aid missions in countries hit by natural disasters, such as Nepal and Haiti, has been recognised by the World Health Organisation as the first Level 3 field hospital in the world – the highest existing level –, which allows it to host numerous surgical interventions. During the exercise, the unit will be set up over a vast area and will consist of an emergency ward, an intensive care ward, a hospitalisation department, an imagery department and a laboratory, all synchronised by a command centre that will operate around the clock.
Head of delegation Col. Dr. Hagay Frenkel:
“This is the largest operational exercise in which the Israeli Medical Corps has taken part so far, and it contributes to the consolidation of cooperation between the IDF and the European Union. We are taking part in ‘Earthquake 2018’ to improve the activity of the medical corps in its overture to save human lives.”
The composition of the delegation:
36 medical doctors, 21 medical assistants, 2 pharmacists, 7 army paramedics, one psychologist, one veterinarian, one chiropractor, 5 x-ray specialists, 4 laboratory specialists, 4 biologists, 13 nurses, one medical clown (for the children hospitalised), an army rabbi and 7 cooks.
The delegation also consists of 90 retired servicemen. The rest of the staff consists of career servicemen or currently enlisted servicemen. Another 10 medical doctors, 10 medical technicians, as well as the Search and Rescue Unit (Unit 669) and a flight crew will take part in the medevac exercise.
The field hospital will be equipped with the latest technology, the most efficient technology at this moment. Its equipment includes 50 beds (hospitalisation, emergency and surgery beds), dozens of types of medicines necessary in such situations, 200 vials, 8 oxygen masks, one surgery table, anaesthesia equipment, two ultrasounds, one water purifier vehicle, and oxygen production equipment. All the above will be placed in 10 air-conditioned tents.
The Israeli camp will be set up next to the camps from Romania, United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Norway, and European Union representatives, and the delegations will be housed in 120 tents.
Electricity will be provided by two large high-efficiency generators.