Reopening of the Dehdadi free hospital
Lt. Col. Vivian E. Gaz, commander 378th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, and Dr. Khaleque Azraksh, hospital director, cut a ribbon during the reopening of the Dehdadi free hospital in Afghanistan, Jan. 26, 2012. The hospital was modernized and renovated by the U.S. Army under the Commanders Emergency Response Program.

FORWARD OPERATING BASE DEHDADI II, Afghanistan (Jan. 30, 2012) -- A five-month effort to provide needed equipment and repairs to the free hospital in Dehdadi was commemorated during a brief ceremony at the hospital Jan. 26.

The needs of the hospital were made known to the Army during a meeting with representatives of the community. With the cooperation of the local government, a project to address the needs of the hospital was initiated and funded under the Commanders Emergency Response Program, or CERP.

Capt. Sherman Pinckney, the 530th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion CERP officer, began the project; however, in December the 378th CSSB replaced the 530th as the 10th Sustainment Brigade's CSSB in the Regional Command North.

A new CERP officer, Capt. Adriel M. Roberson, took over supervision of the project.

Prior to the renovations, many of the rooms leaked when it rained. There was no lead shielding in the walls of the X-ray room and no enclosed waiting area, said Roberson. The hospital also lacked accommodations for mothers postpartum requiring them to leave the hospital no more than six hours after delivery.

Repairs were made to the roof, a new birthing room and nursery were added, the walls of the X-ray room received lead shielding, a waiting area was built, and an office was built for the hospital director.

In addition to the structural improvements, the hospital was supplied with new incubators, 30 nebulizers, a new X-ray machine, sterilization equipment and baby supplies.

While there are fees for service clinics in the area, the hospital is the only free medical care available and sometimes as many as 400 patients are treated during a day, said Roberson.

Page last updated Mon January 30th, 2012 at 00:00