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International Medical Corps deploys to Corpus Christi

International Medical Corps, a disaster recovery and first responder organization, has deployed in Corpus Christi, setting up field tents on the Christus Spohn hospital grounds at Memorial and Shoreline. Courtesy photo

The International Medical Corps demonstrated emergency medical field units being deployed to Christus Spohn hospitals in South Texas on Sept. 10. The fully equipped hospital tents were set up on the grounds of Christus Spohn’s Memorial and Shoreline campuses in Corpus Christi. They can be used for triage and testing and as distribution or waiting areas.

“We don’t anticipate needing the field units in the near future, but we are ready and that’s what we all want to know,” said Nueces County Judge Barbara Canales, who got a look at the equipment during the tour. “We are ready and prepared to handle any situation as they arise, and because of the upcoming flu season, we must be ready.”

The International Medical Corps acts as a first responder in communities hit by disaster, providing emergency relief and help with recovery. The nonprofit began in 1984 working in Afghanistan, which was occupied by the Soviet Union. It has worked with countries in Africa fighting ebola and was one of the first organizations on the ground in civil-war torn Somalia in 1991.

Field units designed to supplement hospitals during times of disaster also will be built at the Christus Spohn locations in Beeville, Kleberg, and Alice.

“They will be supporting our medical staff in the fall who are dealing with COVID-19, and we are grateful to have them,” Canales said. “So, as we close out another week of living with the after-effects of two disasters, we remind all of you to stay safe and stay distant and be especially vigilant about wearing your masks.”

According to the corps' Dr. Solomon Kuah, they will remain in Corpus Christi until there’s a vaccine for the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The International Medical Corps has field operations in six other U.S. cities, including Boston and Chicago.

Although the number of active COVID-19 cases in Corpus Christi have been on the decline recently, the Coastal Bend area still has one of the highest counts in the state.

The service is provided free to the community as it is funded by private donors. Biopharmaceutical company AbbVie donated the personal protective equipment that comes with the field unit.

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