Huntsville nurses and EMTs give medical aid to hurricane victims

WAAY 31 spoke to a nurse practitioner and EMT from north Alabama who are providing medical aid to hurricane victims in Panama City.

Posted: Oct 18, 2018 5:16 PM
Updated: Oct 18, 2018 6:51 PM

As more and more north Alabamians are holding donation drives for Hurricane Michael relief efforts in Florida, WAAY 31 spent the day with a nurse practitioner and EMT from Huntsville who are helping out in Panama City.

Nurse Practitioner, Chase Uptain, and EMT, Sylbia Bell, were in the hardest hit areas on Thursday.

The pair set up shop at a FEMA distribution site being ran by the National Guard. Right as WAAY 31 pulled up, a woman with a gaping leg wound came to the medical tent. Uptain and Bell flushed her wound but it was so bad, they said she needed to go to the ER, because if the infection gets into her bloodstream it could be deadly.

"We just saw a lady with a really bad leg wound that needs to go to the emergency room. We did a dressing on that," said Uptain.

Bell said in the two hours they were at the FEMA distribution site, they saw about 20 people.

"It does feel good to be out here helping people," said Bell.

The two said the need for more medical staff is very real.

"I'd like to challenge everyone at home at Madison Hospital and surrounding hospitals to send as many people and volunteers as you can," said Uptain.

The CarePlus group Uptain and Bell are with will be heading back to north Alabama in the next few days, but another crew will replace them to keep up the work.

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