Earthquake in Nepal: Switzerland provides additional response on the ground, sending a medical team to the disaster area

Bern, Press release, 28.04.2015

On the evening of 28 April 2015, a 10-strong medical team will fly to Nepal as part of the “Mother and Child” unit to provide medical support in the disaster area for women in childbirth and to perform surgery on children there. The deployment of the team of doctors by the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit is the first response measure to be taken following an initial assessment of the situation by the rapid response team sent to the region on 26 April 2015 in the wake of the devastating earthquake in the Himalayas.

28 April 2015: A medical team flew to Nepal as part of the “Mother and Child” unit to provide medical support for women in childbirth and to perform surgery on children there. © FDFA

The “Mother and Child” unit is a rapid response medical team deployed by the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit. On Tuesday evening, eight medical personnel and two logistics experts will depart from Belp airport for Nepal. The team will travel on  the Federal Council’s official jet in cooperation with the Swiss Air Force operated by the Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport (DDPS).

The “Mother and Child” rapid response team was set up based on experience acquired following the earthquake in Haiti. Medical personnel can be sent to reinforce existing health teams only a few days after a disaster hits. Central to their work are surgical operations on children and childbirth support. The team will take with it the medical equipment  needed for its work. The flight on 28 April 2015 will carry 562 kg of equipment. Together with personal equipment, the plane will thus have a total cargo of 1 tonne.

The Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit decided to deploy this 10-strong team following an evaluation by the advance detachment sent on Sunday, 26 April. The six-member group of experts assessed the situation and the requirements in the disaster area upon their arrival in the Nepalese capital, took charge of coordination with the authorities and the local partners on the ground, supplied first aid and supported the Swiss embassy and the cooperation office of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation in Kathmandu. The plan is for this team to be joined by eight specialists from the Swiss Disaster Relief Unit. A larger consignment of aid is scheduled to be delivered on Thursday, 30 April 2015.


Further information:

Development and cooperation Nepal


Fact Sheet(pdf, 174kb)


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