As South Sudan marks the first anniversary of its independence on July 9, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) teams are struggling to save lives in one of the most complicated and challenging refugee crises in its history. Having arrived with stories of violence, some 100,000 Sudanese refugees, many of them ill, have sought sanctuary in camps in Upper Nile State with inadequate resources and harsh living conditions.
Fighting has worsened once again over the last few months in North and South Kivu provinces, in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. As a result, people are being killed or injured, and thousands of families are on the move seeking safety.
Before the opening of the Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) surgical hospital in Kunduz Province, northern Afghanistan, people in the region suffering from severe injuries had two options. They made the long and dangerous journey to Kabul or Pakistan, or they visited an expensive private clinic. As a result, few patients received the trauma care they needed.
Chagas is a neglected disease that affects between eight and ten million people, mainly in Latin America. Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) works in Paraguay's rural Chaco region, going into isolated communities to educate people about the disease and screen them for it. Internationally, MSF fights to improve access to diagnosis and treatment for the disease and advocates for more research and development into its treatment.
In November 2011, MSF staff in the Central African Republic held a sleeping sickness screening near Maitikoulou, in the northwest region of the country. Sleeping sickness, or human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), is a neglected infectious disease that is often fatal, affecting humans and animals in tropical areas of Africa.
Bihar State, in northeastern India, is a major epicenter of the parasitic disease visceral leishmaniasis—also known as kala azar. Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) works in Bihar’s Vaishali district to treat this complicated and deadly disease.
Huge numbers of Somalis have left the country’s central regions to seek refuge in the capital, Mogadishu, since July. They have had to leave due to poor agricultural production, loss of livestock because of drought, increasing prices, and perpetual insecurity. Once they reach Mogadishu, however, they are vulnerable to a host of health problems.