International Activity Report 2006/2007
MSF in Angola, 2006/2007
Field Staff: 878
Reason for Intervention:
- Armed Conflict
- Endemic/Epidemic Disease
- Social Violence
- Healthcare Exclusion
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MSF first started working in Angola in 1983 to respond to conflict-related medical emergencies and expanded its activities both geographically and medically as unmet needs were identified. Broad support was provided for basic healthcare including medical attention for people with tuberculosis (TB), HIV/ AIDS and Human African Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness). MSF regularly responded to outbreaks of diseases such as meningitis, measles, cholera, hemorrhagic fever, and other health problems including nutritional crises.
Five years have passed since the signing of a peace agreement that ended 27 years of civil war in Angola. As the state continues to rehabilitate the healthcare system and develops a proper healthcare infrastructure, MSF in 2006 and 2007 engaged in a gradual process of closing and handing over its activities to government, local and international development NGOs.
Prior to the final project closures, MSF was particularly active in responding to cholera outbreaks. Rapid urbanization, inadequate water and sanitation systems and a disorganized public health system combined with heavy rains accelerated the country’s worst ever recorded outbreak of cholera in February 2006. MSF treated more than 26,000 people during this intervention, which lasted until September. In November 2006, more people presented with cholera in Lubango, Huila province and MSF launched another intervention that lasted until January 2007, treating approximately 6,000 people.
MSF transfers its remaining projects in 2006/2007
- In Kuito, Bié province, support ended for the TB program at the provincial hospital, which had approximately 500 patients undergoing treatment. MSF had previously supported the overall management of the hospital, which was transferred to Angolan authorities at the end of 2003.
- A malaria treatment center in Kuito was also handed over to local authorities. Following several studies conducted on resistance to various anti-malarial drugs, new malaria treatment protocols using artesunate-based combination therapy had been introduced both in the Kuito hospital and at health posts.
- MSF has also supported the 80-bed hospital in Camacupa and four health posts for the treatment of TB, malaria and malnutrition. Approximately 200 people were receiving TB treatment at this project, which was taken over by the Ministry of Health (MoH) at the end of 2006.
- In Cuemba, Bié province MSF had upgraded a health center to a municipal hospital, which provided quality primary and secondary healthcare to residents and returning populations, a total target population of 84,000. The Cuemba project was handed to the MoH at the end of 2006
- The project in Mavinga, Province of Cuando Cubango was handed over to the MoH. MSF had supported the local hospital since the ceasefire in 2002. Approximately 80,000 people are living in this area, which is one of the most remote regions of Angola.
- In the city of Malanje, MSF had run a project for HIV/AIDS, TB and malaria since 2003. In 2006, 9,766 people were tested for HIV and 181 were enrolled in a treatment program. Almost 20,000 people were treated for malaria during 2006. Health authorities took over this project in May of 2007.
- Between January 2006 and April 2007, MSF assisted an average of 270 pregnant women monthly in the Xa-Muteba clinic in Lunda Norte province. The project was transferred to the MoH in May 2007.
As of August, 2007, MSF had completely withdrawn from Angola.
MSF worked in Angola from 1983 until 2007.