Baroness of Winterbourne evaluates improvements to Bayaa Clinic
1st Bn., 22nd Inf. Regt., 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div., MND-B
FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – Soldiers of 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad, escorted Baroness Emma Nicholson of Winterbourne, a British Politician and a member of the House of Lords, Sep. 14, to the Bayaa Clinic, located in the western Rashid district.
Coalition Forces and other assistance groups are developing plans to improve the capabilities of the Bayaa Clinic to ensure residents of West Rashid have adequate health care services available.
“A project of this caliber and capacity is best handled by outside agencies that are accustomed to these specific requirements and improvements,” stated Capt. Nate Rawlings, civil affairs officer, assigned to 1st Bn., 22nd Inf. Regt., 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div.
The Bayaa Clinic has been operational for more than 20 years and is capable of handling prenatal and pediatric issues, said Rawlings.
The clinic staff includes 18 doctors and 18 dentists and several pharmacists, medics, and nurses.
The clinic is limited by outdated equipment, inadequate exam rooms and limited capabilities to house patients overnight; the staff at the Bayaa Clinic is also not able to handle severe trauma or emergency care, he said.
The “Regulars” of 1st Bn., 22nd Inf. Regt., have made the Bayaa Clinic a priority and are working diligently to acquire the appropriate level of assistance for the clinic, said Rawlings.
Baroness Nicholson, an international humanitarian especially for youth in care, devoted specific attention to the Bayaa Clinic.
The Baroness’ attention to the Bayaa Clinic shows a great improvement by the community and the security forces in Bayaa, said 2nd Lt. Matthew Addison, fire support officer, Co. D, 4th Bn., 64th Armor Regt., attached to the 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div.
“The Baroness visit shows the commitment of both Coalition Forces and the international community to the people of Iraq, their health and well-being,” said Addison, of Douglasville, Ga.
Addison, who has been involved in the development of this clinic, said that he was proud to see this magnitude of attention brought to such a worthy cause.
“The nature of security in Bayaa has dramatically improved from earlier levels, and the Parliament member’s inspection of the area is an opportunity to advance the medical care available to the people,” he explained.
This event is a small step towards progress for this health clinic and the people of Bayaa and West Rashid, said Addison.
Through the cooperation of Coalition Forces, International agencies, and the people of Iraq, this health clinic could become a premier institute for child and adult care in Baghdad, he explained.
By Capt. Jeffrey Tounge