MH370: MAS could not have been prouder of its caregivers

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) commercial director Dr Hugh Dunleavy said he could not have been prouder of their caregivers who were offering comfort to the distraught families around the clock. He said since the disappearance of flight MH370, their immediate action was to ensure that the family members and next of kin received the assistance and support they needed at their most trying time.

"I have been incredibly impressed by the care and com passion of the caregivers who basically buckled down, got to know the families and spent almost 48 hours straight with the family members trying to provide assistance and support wherever they could.

"No one took a break. Everyone was there just to make sure the families were taken care of," he said in a three minutes 24 seconds video uploaded on MAS Youtube channel.

However, he said the family members were anxious about what had happened to their next of kin and this had caused certain level of confusion.

"Even though now there are so many countries, so many ships and so many aircraft searching, the caregivers are still unable to answer the fundamental question of what hap pened to those passengers and to the aircraft.

"As time went by and we still did not know what happened to the aircraft, family members became increasingly dis traught," said Dunleavy who led the team here and in Beijing.

He said the most stressful time for both the caregivers and family members was when they were asked to face up to the possibility that they may have lost their family members.

"I remembered when it was about 33 hours after the incident when we lost contact with the aircraft and I had to give advice to the family members that they should be prepared for the worse," he said, adding that the caregivers were available at all times, despite the tension and stress when the announcement was made.

He said the caregivers were also always present to provide any available information, listening ear and empathy.

"That was the primary function for us to be there, make sure we had rooms in the hotels for them, they were being fed, they were given water, and most of all we were there to listen to them."

As the days went by, he said, the caregivers established a really strong bond with the family members.

"I myself made a close bond with many of those families, particularly those who were able to speak English as well as Chinese.

"My mandarin skills are somewhat limited, but the ability to connect with people is what's most important during these time of stress and I think I cannot say how proud I am of the work and the commitment of the MAS family."

He noted that it was vital and important that the people MAS sent to comfort and take care of the family were well prepared, well trained and they have an unbelievable level of compassion for the needs of those family members.