Responding to a refugee emergency and caring for neglected communities.
Our work in Bangladesh
Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) continues to respond to the medical and humanitarian needs of Rohingya refugees and vulnerable Bangladeshi communities, and to address gaps in health care in Dhaka’s Kamrangirchar slum.
What's happening in Bangladesh?
MSF remains one of the main providers of medical humanitarian assistance to the stateless Rohingya, approximately one million of whom live in the largest refugee camp in the world, in Cox’s Bazar. Five years since the initial emergency, people still live in the same overcrowded and basic bamboo shelters, entirely dependent on aid and with little hope for the future. Outbreaks of waterborne and vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles, acute watery diarrhea, and diphtheria, pose a serious ongoing threat.
How we're helping in Bangladesh
In Bangladesh, MSF runs a health care program for refugees in Cox’s Bazar, who fled recurrent targeted violence in Rakhine State by the Myanmar military, and for vulnerable communities in Dhaka’s slums. In 2021, we also supported the COVID-19 response.
COVID-19 emergency response
Between July and October, we set up and ran an emergency 16-bed COVID-19 treatment center for people with moderate-to-severe symptoms. MSF also supported the only government-run vaccination campaign in a refugee setting in Bangladesh, and assisted with staff recruitment and training.
Across 10 facilities, we provide a range of specialist health care to address some of the vast health needs of more than 920,000 Rohingya refugees living in the camps, as well as a growing number of patients from the host community. Services include general health care, treatment of chronic diseases, such as diabetes and hypertension, emergency care for trauma patients and women’s health care. We also upgraded water and sanitation in the camps.
In 2021, our teams continued to witness the medical consequences of deteriorating camp conditions. Dire water and sanitation, fires, flooding and movement restrictions all affect the ability of Rohingya to live in dignity. MSF is the largest provider of specialist psychiatric care for people suffering from severe mental health conditions, such as psychosis and anxiety disorders, which often stem from living in the camp environment and a sense of hopelessness about their future.
During the year, we handed over some of our activities to local organizations, including an extensive water network powered by solar energy.
We run two clinics in Kamrangirchar district, in the capital, Dhaka, offering reproductive health care, and medical and psychological treatment for victims of sexual and gender-based violence.
We also provide occupational health services, which include treatment for workers diagnosed with diseases linked to their work environment, as well as preventive care and risk assessment in factories. Our medical assistance is tailored to the needs of people working in extremely hazardous conditions.
How we're helping in 2021
Individual mental health consultations
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How you can help
Not everyone can treat patients in the field. But everyone can do something.
Some humanitarian crises make the headlines—others don’t. Unrestricted support from our donors allows us to mobilize quickly and efficiently to provide lifesaving medical care to the people who need it most, whether those needs are in the spotlight or not. And your donation is 100 percent tax-deductible.