• BAGHDAD - An Iraqi doctor molds an arm cast for a patient at the Abu Ghraib Hospital, here, July 12. The hospital has received an estimated $800,000 in funds from Coalition forces to refurbish the building and purchase medical equipment. The Soldiers of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, hosted Iraqi media at the hospital for a tour.

    BAGHDAD - An Iraqi doctor molds an arm cast for...

    BAGHDAD - An Iraqi doctor molds an arm cast for a patient at the Abu Ghraib Hospital, here, July 12. The hospital has received an estimated $800,000 in funds from Coalition forces to refurbish the building and purchase medical equipment. The Soldiers...

  • BAGHDAD - Spc. Michael Mekelburg of Muncie, Ind., (foreground) and Sgt. James Murray (background) of Las Vegas, pull security outside the Abu Ghraib Hospital, here, July 12. Both Soldiers are military policemen assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division. The Dagger Brigade Soldiers escorted members of the Iraqi media through the hospital for a tour. The hospital has received an estimated $800,000 in funds from Coalition forces for refurbishment and purchase of medical equipment. Another $200,000 in renovations and improvements are planned.

    BAGHDAD - Spc. Michael Mekelburg of Muncie...

    BAGHDAD - Spc. Michael Mekelburg of Muncie, Ind., (foreground) and Sgt. James Murray (background) of Las Vegas, pull security outside the Abu Ghraib Hospital, here, July 12. Both Soldiers are military policemen assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters...

  • BAGHDAD - Spc. Ray Kling of Pittsburgh pulls security outside the Abu Ghraib Hospital, here, July 12. Kling is an infantryman assigned to 2nd Battalion, 112th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, Pennsylvania National Guard. The 2nd Bn., 112th Inf. Regt. Soldiers cordoned off the hospital while the "Dagger" Brigade Soldiers of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, provided security during a guided tour of the hospital by members of the Iraqi media.

    BAGHDAD - Spc. Ray Kling of Pittsburgh pulls...

    BAGHDAD - Spc. Ray Kling of Pittsburgh pulls security outside the Abu Ghraib Hospital, here, July 12. Kling is an infantryman assigned to 2nd Battalion, 112th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, Pennsylvania National Guard. The 2nd...

BAGHDAD - Iraqi citizens in the Abu Ghraib area of Baghdad have improved healthcare options following the latest round of hospital renovations - part of a $1 million effort by Coalition forces.

Soldiers of the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, escorted members of the Iraqi media, here, July 12, to showcase the hospital's improvements and upgrades.

Hospital upgrades include new paint, floors, ceilings and a newly furnished waiting room. Some of the medical hardware includes an incinerator, ultrasound equipment and communications technology.

"The doctors and staff members of the hospital have been very grateful for what we have done," said Capt. Michael Nau, project manager for the 2nd BCT, 1st Inf. Div. "They wish honestly that we could do more and honestly, we wish we could do more too."

According to Nau, $800,000 has been spent on the hospital and another $200,000 in renovations and improvements are planned.

A satellite Internet suite and 24-hour electricity were some of the upgrades in technology that are essential for a modern hospital, added Nau, a native of San Diego.

"If you can imagine having a hospital without an Internet connection, it's the equivalent of having to send a person out, in order to coordinate for repairs," said Nau. "That resulted in back and forth trips from the Ministry of Health back to the hospital."

Nau said the process of rebuilding a hospital starts with communication and is followed up with many meetings.

"We visit the site, we talk to the various directors and officials at the site and we see what exactly they need to do their jobs better," said Nau. "We then focus on the very things they need the most and provide them with it."

Projects such as the Abu Ghraib hospital contribute to security by providing Iraqis with basic needs to be self-sufficient.

"With a project like this it helps with security because now we are meeting the basic needs of the people," Nau added. "Now they have less of a reason to be upset and that helps with the overall situation. It's a small piece, but it is a piece."

According to Nau, helping meet the needs of the Iraqis in Western Baghdad not only strengthens security, but boosts the sense of cooperation and pride of the Soldiers involved in such projects.

"We have an utmost care for the Iraqi people, wherever they are, whether they are in the city, the countryside, or somewhere out in between," Nau said. "It's extremely rewarding for me ... to see and know we are making a difference. That's all the reward I want."

Caring for the Iraqi people, boosting their morale and healthcare facilities brings Coalition forces one step closer to transitioning Baghdad back over to the Iraqis - one piece at a time.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16