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Details of the first meeting of the MOHW task force in response to the Formosa Fun Coast Dust Explosion

  • Data Source:Ministry of Health and Welfare
  • Created:2015-06-29
  • Last Updated:2017-01-11

In response to the needs for medical care and social welfare in the aftermath of the incident that took place at Formosa Fun Coast in New Taipei City on June 27, 2015, the dust explosion task force of the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW) held its first meeting on the morning of June 29, discussing matters such as the inventory of medical resources and capacity, the supply and distribution of medications and medical supplies, the risk status of the injured, and psychological support services. 

1. The MOHW is deeply saddened by the serious injuries sustained by a large number of people in this incident. The MOHW would also like to thank the medical personnel at the hospitals involved in the relief efforts for their immediate and utmost efforts to save and treat the injured and for sacrificing their holidays to attend to the hospitalized victims. The relevant agencies under the MOHW will continue to provide necessary assistance and ensure the best care for all of the injured. 

2. A video conference will be held with the health departments and the Emergency Operations Centers (EOCs) on a daily basis, to do a rolling inventory of the medical capacity in every city and county, including available beds in intensive care units, burn units, general trauma units, and plastic surgery units, the medical professionals needed to treat critical illness, and other medical resources. The methods with which assistance was provided for transferring the injured to other hospitals were also monitored. If necessary, specialists in burn treatment and critical care will also be invited to offer professional medical advice to the hospitals that provide hospitalization and treatment for the injured. 

3. A list of necessary and crucial medications for the injured (mainly consisting of human albumin, burn ointments, and solutions for intravenous infusion) has been made and confirmed. A special section that contains information about medications and medical supplies in stock for burns will be established to investigate and oversee the supply of and demand for medications among the hospitals and to offer real-time information regarding supply of medications for people to search. In addition, liaison will be established with the Society of Clinical Pharmacy, and hotlines for reporting the shortage of medications, medical supplies, and skin grafts will be provided. Assistance will also be provided for the distribution of necessary medications and medical supplies. Such items will be imported under a special scheme if necessary to ensure an abundant supply of the medications for treatment of burns. 

4. It has been confirmed that the medical expenses covered by the health insurance will be handled leniently under a special scheme with the rights and interests of the victims as the top priority, and will not be included in the total amount of Health Insurance of the hospitals. The MOHW will continue to discuss with the New Taipei City Government regarding future treatment expenses that are not covered by the health insurance and consequently have to be paid by the victims as well as the medical expenses for foreign victims. 

5. Psychiatric rehabilitation and social worker service mechanisms will be initiated, and their priority is to offer counseling and psychological services to seriously injured victims and their family members and to strengthen psychological support to the injured before and after surgeries. 

6. More efforts will be made to offer explanations to the public concerning the coordination and integration of victim relief measures and to clarify doubts and false Internet rumors in a timely manner, so as to prevent relevant medical treatment for the injured from being affected. 

7. Statistics of medical treatment for the victims of the Formosa Fun Coast explosion (as of 18:00 on 06/29/2015): Medical care was sought by 534 people (the actual number of injured people was 499). 393 people were hospitalized, and 221 of them were in the intensive care units of 46 hospitals in seven cities, namely Keelung City, Taipei City, New Taipei City, Taoyuan City, Hsinchu City, Taichung City, and Kaohsiung City. 

Premier Mao of the Executive Yuan visited the MOHW at 2:30 p.m. on June 29 to oversee the operation of the task force and understand how the efforts related to medical care for the injured were coordinated and integrated. Premier Mao also instructed the MOHW to meticulously monitor overall medical capacity, including the availability and distribution of human resources, medications, and medical supplies, on a daily basis. He also asked the MOHW to precisely estimate the required medical expenses, assess the risks associated with the degrees of injury sustained by the victims, and assist with information about transfer of the injured to ensure that issues related to the injured such as medical care and expenses are properly addressed.