Given the large numbers of sick and wounded people in Putumattalan at the moment, how are patients selected for medical evacuation?
Because of the limited space available on the ferry chartered by the ICRC, there is no way to avoid selecting patients based on need. Patients are selected for evacuation on the advice of medical professionals who work in Putumattalan. Every evacuation is carried out with the agreement of the local authorities. The ICRC is not involved in the selection process. After patients board our ferry and arrive in Trincomalee or, as has been the case in recent days, in Pulmoddai, health facilities take over from the ICRC. They set priorities for treatment based on the degree of medical emergency.
The 'selection process' is possibly handled by the Deputy Director of Regional Health Services. Does the LTTE have an influence over this? How does the SL Navy treat this issue? Its known that once the initial treatment is given most of these people are transferred to the Vavuniya camps. Note how the interviewee says that in recent days people are taken to Pulmoddai. This is where the Indian Doctors are working from. What is special about what they are doing? Why Pulmoddai? Why cant they work in the Trinco Hospital and help boost the capacity there?
The Putumattalan Health authorities dont even seem to have things like basic surgical cotton etc:
Many patients need to have a limb amputated because of a shrapnel injury. We also treat injuries to other parts of the body, sometimes to remove shrapnel. I have seen many patients with heavily infected wounds, sometimes in the area where the amputation is required. Infections set in rapidly when a wound is not treated with antibiotics or a dressing cannot be changed. On some patients arriving here, strips of sarong or tee-shirts have been used instead of dressings. Pieces of wood are often used as splinters to immobilize a fracture and spare the person a lot of pain.
Also see further here.