Central African Republic: Post-election violence hinders access to medical care

Ouaka: Aïssatou Story

Central African Republic 2020 © Adrienne Surprenant/Collectif

NEW YORK, DECEMBER 29, 2020—Following the national election in Central African Republic (CAR) on December 27, the country has witnessed an increase in tension and violence.

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) teams remain mobilized to deliver humanitarian and medical aid to the population in the country’s capital, Bangui, and in the provinces.

While the vast majority of the international medical humanitarian organization’s services in the country continued to be provided after the election, some activities have had to be reduced or suspended due to the significant increase in security risks for patients and staff.

Between December 21 and 28, MSF teams received and treated more than 50 war-wounded in need of surgical care in Bossangoa, at least a dozen in Bambari, and five in Bangui.

This new deterioration in the security context further complicates the already extremely limited access of thousands of Central Africans to essential medical care in a country plagued by a state of chronic medical emergency.

MSF calls on all armed actors to allow health care workers to provide timely medical care, to respect their obligations to protect civilians and humanitarian workers, and to not attack health facilities, ambulances, medical staff, or patients and their caretakers.