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MSF's Response to Unrest in Middle East, North Africa
February 22, 2011
As civil unrest leads to violent clashes in a number of countries in the Middle Eastern and Mediterranean regions, emergency staff from Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) are helping to fill gaps in the medical services for people injured in the protests. In those countries where MSF has been able to visit health facilities, medical personnel are dealing with the increased needs for treating injuries. However, some hospitals and clinics are at risk of running low on medical supplies.
In Bahrain, an MSF assessment team made contact with medical organizations. The team visited Salmanya Hospital in the capital city of Manama several times and has offered support in the event the situation worsens in the coming days or weeks. MSF emergency staff from Egypt and Tunisia are working to bring supplies, including kits for treating wounded people, into Libya. In other countries in the region, including Yemen, MSF teams are ready to assist resident medical staff should the need arise.
During the protests in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, MSF supplied medical materials to Egyptian doctors in two hospitals and in an improvised clinic in a mosque. The team also provided training in how to manage a high number of injured people in a short period of time, and helped set up additional emergency preparedness systems. In Tunisia, MSF donated orthopedic surgery equipment to two hospitals in the south.