The Batticaloa Teaching Hospital Emergency & Accident Project (BEAP) – News Update April 2019


We are devastated by the sad news flowing out of Sri Lanka. Over 300 people have reportedly lost their lives and nearly 500 injured in senseless bombings in Sri Lanka. Some suburbs of Colombo, Negombo & Batticaloa where innocent citizens were going about their business and celebrating Easter Sunday services in Churches were blown to smithereens and in some cases unrecognisable. Unsuspecting tourists and workers in three of Colombo’s five-star hotels were blown up and this will no doubt cause unimaginable economic damage to the nation’s growing tourism industry. The trickle-down effect of this will hurt many ordinary citizens working in the industry.

The Foundation Supporting a National Trauma Service in Sri Lanka deplores this horrible work of evil terrorists and reach out to the people of Sri Lanka with concern, care and prayer


The newly constructed Accident & Emergency Trauma Treatment Unit at the Teaching Hospital in Batticaloa, to which the Foundation Supporting a National Trauma Service in Sri Lanka made a substantial financial and management contribution had 69 casualties brought for emergency treatment. Sadly 26 were dead or died soon after admission. Forty-three (43) are being tended as we write this newsletter. The hospital’s Director, Dr Kala Ranchane Ganeshalingam and her staff have worked around the clock in providing the required medical services. All three operating theatres have been utilised concurrently aided by extra medical staff from the Military Hospital.

In the words of Sasi Nagalingam, a Senior Nurse who was brought out by our Foundation for training at the Wangaratta Hospital, in Victoria Australia” everything is under control. “We are not short of supplies or personnel at present”

Dr Swarnakumar, a long-time member of the Foundation who now works at the National Hospital in Colombo had a similar report that he made to Dr David Young.

I have been touched by the numerous emails, text messages and phone calls that | have received from the Project BEAP members, interest group and some donors too. Clearly, they had words of sympathy and support for anything that we would be doing for the people of Sri Lanka in general and Batticaloa in particular during this time.

Drs Suren Jayaweera and Sharmila Balanathan were ready to go to Sri Lanka as soon as it was possible to help. Clearly, this is not the time to rush there. We must wait for the dust to settle and for travel advisory restrictions to be eased by the Dept of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Our thinking is that skin grafting, orthopaedic re-construction and psychological counselling will be the need in a few weeks’ time. | am therefore appealing to medical professionals to advise us of their interest in joining BEAP MEDIFORCE to make a trip to Co at the right time. Kindly advise us of your interest in this regard.

| have also had people asking if monetary aid is required. To this | have said that we should wait and see and be guided by what is happening in Sri Lanka. | have heard today that the Government of Sri Lanka is donating Rs100,000 (approx. A$787) to the family of a deceased person to help with funeral expenses. In addition, Rs million is being paid out to the next of kin of a deceased person.

The Foundation intends to conduct a fund-raising event in the near future, in Melbourne to help with medical supplies or prosthetic aids to those affected by the disaster.

We will keep you informed of our activities in this regard.


With warm regards,
Nihal de Run Executive Vice President

Progress Report by Jerome Adams- CEO

Latest from the A&E at The Teaching Hospital in Batticaloa (THB)

The admission area to the entire hospital was relocated to the new A&E building from January this year. Therefore, many more patients are assessed at the A&E Triage.

We are happy to report that daily admissions exceed 200 and has reached 300 during some peak periods, which is a testament to the reputation that this hospital is gaining in the Eastern Province and the hard working and dedicated staff led by Dr Kala Ranjini Ganeshalingam, Director of THB.

Of the three operating Theatres commissioned only two work at any one time due to the shortage of anaesthetists and medical professionals. Representations have been made to the Ministry authorities and Nihal de Run has taken it up with the Minister of Health. Promises have been made by the Ministry that staffing will be closely looked at to ensure all facilities and equipment are put to the best use forthwith to keep up with the demand. We are still waiting.

Update on purchase of CT Scanner

It is with great satisfaction that we can now confirm that the Ministry of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine has formally agreed to provide a minimum 128 slice CT Scanner; so vital for accurate diagnostic information. This will add to the best practice facility and infrastructure at the newly commissioned A&E.

We will now work with our partners, the Rotarians and other regular donors to fund our share of the cost which is 50% up to a maximum of USD$300K. This will then end a successful campaign initiated by David Young and Nihal De Run, over many years. We are confident this can be achieved before year end 2019. Vocational Training.

This is an ongoing project with our partners the Strathmore Rotary Club and the Rotary District no: 9790 and the Rotary Club of Colombo East. We are working with the Wangaratta Hospital for Best Practice Educators and Trainers to go to Batticaloa Hospital. Rotarians in Australia will fund the travel cost, whilst Rotarians in Sri Lanka will provide logistics and upkeep costs for the trainers who need to be accommodated and cared for during their stay, we are targeting July/August 2019 for this exchange.


Those in Melbourne, Australia will recall the two successful “Timeless Classics” concerts with around 700 patrons at each attended. Our patrons enjoyed the amazing talents of some of Sri Lanka’s best musicians and singers on display, supported by the local choir CONCHORD, at the Besen Centre in Burwood, Victoria Australia. Stay tuned for a new and bigger production of this series of concerts in 2020. Our energetic committee are in the process of organising and putting plans together. More information on this to follow.

The Foundation PATRON: Prof David de Kretser VICE PATRONS: Mr Abbas Akbarally & Dr Ranjith Hettiarachchi

TRUSTEES: Dr David Young, Nihal De Run, Indrajith Fernando, Nalin Pathikirikorale and Bobby Jordan-Hansen


President: Dr David Young

Executive Vice President: Nihal deRun

Vice Presidents: Dr. GA Hoy & N G Pathikirikorale

Chief Executive Officer: Jerome Adams

Deputy CEO: Dave Paramanandan

Financial Controllers and Treasurers: Kirupa Sathanantha (AUS) Indrajith Fernando (Sri Lanka)

Executive Secretary Australia: Lorraine Fernando

Committee Members: Melville Fernando & Riza Muthaliph, Rohan Deepak Maharaja

Sri Lanka: Jayantha Jayawardena, Kalinga Pelpola and Dr Reggie Perera, Senake Amerasinghe (Counsellors)

Fund Raisers: Chandi Page and Sonali de Silva

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