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Iran: Latest MSF Updates

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This is an excerpt from MSF's 2015 International Activity Report:

Despite improvements in health services and in the treatment of addictions and stigmatized diseases such as HIV, many people in Iran still have difficulty accessing the care they need.

MSF has been running a health center in Darvazeh Ghar, one of the poorest areas of Tehran, since 2012. The project aims to reduce the incidence of diseases among vulnerable women and children under the age of 15 by providing access to healthcare for former drug addicts (including children) and their families, pregnant women, sex workers, child laborers and other marginalized people.

MSF provides medical and psychological care, as well as social support, in collaboration with other organisations. In 2015, 6,583 outpatient, 1,899 gynecological and obstetric and 1,742 mental health consultations were carried out. Special attention is paid to the groups most at risk of sexually transmitted infections and infectious diseases such as HIV, hepatitis C and tuberculosis. Rapid diagnostic tests are available and patients can be referred to specialized Ministry of Health centers for treatment. This year, 764 voluntary counselling and testing sessions for HIV were conducted.

The center has a community-based approach and integrates basic healthcare with health promotion activities, adapted to people’s needs in this area of southern Tehran. Outreach activities include patient follow-up and health education sessions in the community. Peer workers play an essential role in helping MSF communicate with harder-to-reach populations.


Specific attention is given to the most-at-risk populations for sexually transmitted infections and infectious diseases such as HIV, hepatitis C, and tuberculosis. Patients include drug users (including children) and their family members, sex workers, and child laborers.

In 2015, MSF will develop a specific approach to the management of hepatitis C and HIV, will undertake activities to try and reduce the risks of infection and hopes to start working with male drug users.

At the end of 2015, MSF had 30 staff in Iran. MSF has worked in the country since 1990.

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