- About Us
- Our Work
- Work With MSF
- Public Events
- Press Room
MSF in Burundi, 2006/2007
Field Staff: 364
Reason for Intervention:
All articles on Burundi »
Two years after elections brought Pierre Nkurunziza to power in 2005, all remaining rebel groups had signed truces with his government and in February 2007, UN peacekeepers were able to close down their operations. With the critical emergency phase over, MSF began focusing on filling gaps in healthcare, particularly in the area of women’s health.
In November 2006, MSF launched a new project in the vast province of Bujumbura Rural (780,000 inhabitants), next to the capital. It uses radio, ambulances and qualified staff to refer women with obstetric problems from a dozen health centers to quality healthcare clinics in Bujumbura, where MSF pays the costs of their treatment. By the end of June2007, 481 women had been cared for through this project, with an increasing number of referrals. This is a temporary system guaranteeing free access to quality emergency obstetric care whilst an MSF clinic is constructed in the Kabezi area, which will be equipped to treat complicated deliveries. In Bujumbura itself, MSF’s Seruka Centre, a women’s health clinic that opened in 2003, continues to provide medical and psychological care, treatment of sexually transmitted infections and services for family planning to survivors of sexual violence. An average of 300 consultations are carried out monthly and the center has helped over 4,720 survivors of sexual violence since its inception. Even with the end of active conflict, rape remains extensive, and the MSF clinic treats approximately 120 new patients per month, 15 percent of whom are children less than five years of age.
Elsewhere in the country, MSF has worked since 1995 in the province of Karuzi to improve access to healthcare by supporting 12 health centers and the provincial hospital. Activities are also undertaken to safeguard people against malaria. Following improvement of the health situation in the area and increased involvement of donors towards health initiatives, MSF will transfer the Karuzi project to the Ministry of Health (MoH) at the end of 2007.
In Ruyigi district, MSF provides primary healthcare through 11 health centers and support to two hospitals. Four clinics and a hospital in Musema, Kayanza province were handed over to the MoH at the end of May 2007, followed by seven clinics and a hospital in Kininya in July. A total of 370,000 consultations had been performed and 108,000 patients treated for malaria. MSF supported the care provided to patients admitted to hospital, including 4,300 pregnant women who gave birth. In addition, 600 people were tested for HIV/AIDS, many of whom were referred to the MoH for anti-retroviral treatment. MSF continues to lobby the Burundian government for improved access to low-cost healthcare, as most people cannot obtain access under the current cost-recovery system.
MSF has worked in Burundi since 1992.