October 29, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Tim Sullivan, Communications and Media Relations
Spaulding Rehabilitation Network
(617) 573-2918 (O), (617) 501-5985 (M)
SALEM, MA- The recent war and subsequent overthrow of long-time dictator Moammar Gadhafi resulted in an urgent humanitarian need in Libya with thousands wounded and severely injured. The Libyan National Transition Council (LNTC) with support from the US Government reached out to care facilities in the United States for experts in rehabilitative care and selected the Spaulding Rehabilitation Network based in Boston, Massachusetts to begin to treat some of the wounded Libyan fighters.
“As a leader in rehabilitative care, the clinicians and staff at Spaulding are fully prepared for the challenge ahead to help these war-wounded patients,” said David Storto, President, Spaulding Rehabilitation Network.
The first group of Libyan war wounded was sent to the Spaulding Hospital North Shore in Salem, Massachusetts on Saturday night October 29th. Many of these patients sustained various injuries in the conflict from complex orthopedic injuries, multi-level trauma and nerve damage. It’s estimated the initial group will require a month or more of rehabilitative programs in wound care, physical and occupational therapy and physician led treatment that Spaulding will provide and if need, resources from the Partners HealthCare network will be available.
“As clinicians, our goal is always first and foremost to help those in need in anyway we can. The sheer scale of the conflict has created a humanitarian crisis that any of us as part of the international community must come forward to assist as much as possible. Our physicians, therapists, and nurses are ready to help these patients attain their highest level of recovery possible,” said Dr. Ross Zafonte, VP of Research, Education and Medical Affairs, Spaulding Rehabilitation Network.
The funding for these efforts is provided by the LNTC. Spaulding has reached out to the Massachusetts area Libyan community to help provide support during these patients’ adjustment to a new country with familiar foods, books and language. The group has been placed on one unit at Spaulding Hospital North Shore to allow a sense of community and focus staff resources to best support the unique needs of the war wounded patients.
The Spaulding Rehabilitation Network has a long history of providing care and expertise during urgent international humanitarian needs. Most recently, teams of Spaulding Therapists were on the ground in the aftermath of the 2010 Haiti Earthquake and continue to assist on infrastructure efforts for persons with disabilities in Haiti. “The care and expertise of our dedicated clinicians at Spaulding often knows no borders and we are always ready to assist as much as we can wherever it’s needed,” said Storto.
About the Spaulding Rehabilitation Network
A member of Partners HealthCare, The Spaulding Rehabilitation Network includes Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital its main campus, a 196-bed facility, located in Boston, as well as Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Cape Cod, two long term care facilities Spaulding Hospital Cambridge and Spaulding Hospital North Shore and two skilled nursing facilities, as well as twenty three outpatient sites throughout the Greater Boston area. Spaulding is a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School as well as the official rehabilitation hospital of the New England Patriots. Spaulding is the only rehabilitation hospital in New England continually ranked since 1995 by U.S. News and World Report in its Best Hospitals survey with a #5 ranking in 2011. For more information, please visit www.spauldingnetwork.org.