Years of conflict has had serious consequences on the availability and accessibility of health care in some of Afghanistan's provinces, with women and children often the most vulnerable. The specialized maternity hospital opened by Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) in Khost provides a safe and healthy environment for women to deliver their babies free of charge, and to particularly assist in complicated deliveries in order to help reduce the high maternal mortality rate in the area.
With more than 540,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan, the Jordanian health system has had problems meeting the needs of all these new patients. Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has opened a maternity care clinic in Irbid and plans to scale up activities.
A month after Typhoon Haiyan, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) continues its work in the Philippines, including the remote area of Guiuan. The goal for MSF teams there is to fill in the gaps of medical care, including obstetric care, until the local health authorities can resume all normal activities.
Join Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) tonight at 8pm for an online discussion of the challenges of delivering life-saving maternal health care to women in the countries where we work. The panel will include MSF obstetrician/gynecologists Severine Caluwaerts and Veronica Ades and MSF midwife Ruth Kauffman; the three have worked in countries throughout Africa as well as in Central and South Asia and Oceania. Of all maternal deaths worldwide, 99 percent of them occur in developing countries—the direct result of the lack of adequate health care systems. MSF and other humanitarian organizations cannot replace national health care systems, but our teams work to avert maternal and newborn death as much as possible. The task is not an easy one; everything from poverty to a lack of roads, the inaccessibility of contraception, and in some places, the lower status of women, all work against their meeting that objective. Our panelists will share stories of trying to save lives in the face of such harsh realities and discuss what they’ve learned from the challenges.
In order to prevent the diseases that killed many refugees in Yida camp, South Sudan, in 2012, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) has launched a water and sanitation program and begun a vaccination campaign for children. The campaign was pushed back to start now, during the logistically difficult rainy season, because MSF had to engage in lengthy negotiations to get the vaccine at an affordable price.
In Mali, one in five children don't live to see their fifth birthday. Acute malnutrition affects around 10 percent of children under the age of five. Malaria is still the leading cause of child mortality in the country, with pneumonia a close second. However, there are now straightforward measures for preventing and treating these diseases. In Konseguela, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is running a pediatric program in partnership with the Ministry of Health. This project incorporates prevention into a comprehensive health care program targeting the main causes of child mortality.
When Jawaher fled the bombing in her native Sudan and crossed the border into South Sudan, she only took three of her children and the clothes on their backs. She was forced to leave her eldest child and embark on a month-long journey to a refugee camp where she and the other children would be safe. She is now being trained as a midwife assistant by Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), but she really wants to go home.