Rabat – As the intense cold wave and heavy mountain snowfall have limited access to numerous rural areas in Morocco, the Ministry of Health announced that it has organized 98 medical caravans that have provided emergency medical help to more than 230,000 beneficiaries during this bitterly cold winter season.
The 230,000 recipients, many living in areas isolated by snow-blocked roads, benefited
from free consultations and free distribution of medicines, said Hassan Rochdi, Secretary-General for the Monitoring and Coordination Supervision Centre (Ministry of Interior) on Wednesday.
660 doctors, more than 1,950 nurses and nearly 43 hospitals, 183 medical centres, mobile medical units and more than 400 ambulances belonging to the Ministry of Health were mobilized to provide medical help for rural Morocco.
Helicopters of the Ministry of Health and the Royal Gendarmerie have been mobilized to assist emergency response units, particularly to evacuate emergency cases or to deliver food supplies to remote areas.
The emergency intervention and relief operation began earlier this year with the distribution of foodstuffs and blankets in 22 provinces, including 1,205 villages, with a total population of 514,000 inhabitants, the secretary-general said.
Some 44,000 families have so far benefited from the distribution of foodstuffs and blankets. More aid is planned in the coming days for the affected prefectures and provinces.
Rochdi added that approximately 15 national roads, 21 regional roads and 59 provincial roads have been reopened since the onset of the cold snap.
During this winter season, the Ministry of Interior has established a centre to monitor the development of relief operations, track weather conditions and coordinate intervention operations.
The massive relief effort follows instructions given by King Mohammed VI urging governmental sectors and service providers to remain mobilized and to redouble their efforts to alleviate the negative impact of snowfall, heavy rains and dangerously low temperatures that are affecting provinces across Morocco.