Morocco earthquake: MSF teams mobilise to assess needs

A 6.8-magnitude earthquake struck Morocco late Friday local time in the High Atlas mountains, reportedly causing thousands of deaths and injuries. Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders (MSF) are now on the ground assessing the medical humanitarian needs.

Jennifer Tierney, executive director of MSF Australia and MSF New Zealand, gave the following statement today:

"We are saddened by the tragic news of the earthquake in Morocco and the growing number of reported victims. MSF does not have an established presence in the country but is making contacts with local authorities, in order to send our emergency medical and humanitarian teams to assess needs and provide support if needed.

"Local people are the key to the initial response, when searching for survivors is vital. Earthquake survivors often require medical care such as surgery or dialysis, which can be a challenge when local health systems are affected by a disaster. Restoring health services and providing essential supplies can also be a priority at this stage. Our response will depend on the needs that are assessed on site."

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