Why are we there?

  • Armed conflict
  • Endemic/epidemic disease
  • Health care exclusion

Our work

This is an excerpt from MSF-USA's 2012 Annual Report:

MSF's programs in DRC are and have been among its largest and most active over the past decade.

In 2012, amid escalating violence in the east, health needs in DRC remained enormous. When M23 rebels attacked Rutshuru and Goma in North Kivu province, MSF continued working at Rutshuru hospital (with a reduced team) and various others locations—including Kanyaruchinya and the Mugugna III camp—to provide care to displaced families. Teams also ran a cholera treatment center following an outbreak and operated on 60 war-wounded in Goma’s Virunga hospital.

Elsewhere in the east, MSF resumed activities in Masisi hospital and nearby health centers one year after curtailing them following a security incident. Teams provided comprehensive services in Mweso, Kitchanga, and Pinga as well. In South Kivu, MSF supported hospitals and health centers in Kalonge, Minova, Shabunda, Kimbi Lulenge, and Baraka.

Security remained a concern. Two staff were briefly abducted in Nyanzale, causing a suspension of services. Programs in Pinga and an emergency malaria response in Walikale were also interrupted. The compound in Baraka was robbed, and in February, staff were evacuated from projects in Hauts Plateaux.

In Katanga province, MSF provided basic health care, maternity services, and nutritional support for people displaced by conflict in South Kivu. When fighting reached Katanga itself, MSF tended to displaced people in Mitwaba, Dubie, and, while accessible, Shamwana.

In Orientale province, MSF provided basic and specialist services, maternal and child health care in particular, in Geti, admitting more than 820 patients, two-thirds of them younger than 5, to the emergency department. MSF also supported Dingila hospital in Bas-Uélé—admitting 1,070 patients, more than half with malaria—and the general hospital and three health centers in Niangara, in Haut-Uélé.

In Bas-Uélé, MSF worked with the Ministry of Health to screen 60,000 for sleeping sickness, which is more prevalent in DRC than any other country, and treat nearly 1,110 patients.

MSF staff at Kinshasa’s Centre Hospitalier de Kabinda provided antiretroviral (ARV) treatment to some 4,700 HIV patients (other projects elsewhere offered HIV care as well). Teams treated tens of thousands during a malaria outbreak in Orientale, Équateur, and Maniema provinces, and responded to measles outbreaks in Orientale, Katanga, South Kivu, Bandundu, and Équateur provinces.

Some 1,160 patients were treated for cholera in Orientale’s Ituri district, along with 1,550 in Goma and 300 in Katanga. When Ebola hit Haut-Uélé in August, MSF treated 18 patients and provided psychosocial support.

At the end of 2012, MSF had 2,782 staff in the Democratic Republic of Congo. MSF has been working in the country since 1981.

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