His Majesty The King awarded the Druk Thuksey to the Bhutan Emergency Aeromedical Retrieval Team (BEAR ) on the 114th National Day at Tashichodzong on 17 December.
The honour was conferred to the BEAR team in recognition of their exceptional service to the Nation by bringing emergency medical services to the people across the country and saving numerous lives.
BEAR was conceptualized in October 2016 by the medical staff working at the Emergency Department of the Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital recognizing that numerous lives could be saved if a specialized team could reach the patients and deliver prompt and critical medical care on time.
BEAR team is the first and only specialized team in the country trained in aeromedical retrievals. It has been responding to the medical needs of critical patients on a daily basis. Since 2017, it has carried out over 640 operations, flying to some of the most inaccessible parts of the country, and has saved numerous lives with their timely care.
The head of operation of BEAR, Lhab Dorji, shared his feelings after receiving the honour from His Majesty The King.
“We the team of 19 members based in Thimphu which includes one emergency physician, three medical doctors, six emergency medical residences and nine nurses would like to dedicate ourselves to Tsa Wa Sum and make our volunteerism even more effective,” he said.
Lhab further said, “We didn’t expect to receive the great esteem from HM. We are privileged and our team are happy to receive the honour as we are motivated even more to work hard hereafter and serve the King, country and the people.”
Meanwhile, BEAR had made a total of 640 emergency flights across the country and they even have a team in Paro with one doctor and a nurse.