Aid & Development

Doctors Without Borders Launch New Project in Iraq

Iraq

Doctors Without Borders have provided the health sector in Iraq with $50m in a bid to restore the country's ailing healthcare services.

For years, Doctors without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) have been active in Iraq and have made significant contributions to Iraq’s health sector. MSF first worked in Iraq in 1974 and has been working continuously in the country since 1991. According to reports, the internationally renowned organisation is investing $50 million into the health sector in the country in a bid to improve hospitals and healthcare given to patients.

One such project that was undertaken in Iraq was the opening of the Baghdad Medical Rehabilitation Centre (BMRC) to support victims of war in the country, nearly two years ago. The centre provides much needed post-surgical rehabilitation care, including physical and psychological support.

The BMRC is the only health facility in Baghdad offering comprehensive rehabilitation care, including physical and psychological support, to victims of war injured by bomb blasts and gunshots. There is a scarcity of such services in the country, where health care facilities have been severely damaged after years of war.

MSF are currently undertaking a project to equip hospitals in the country with the facilities to better treat people living with chronic health conditions and those wounded in the fight against ISIS, who are in need of complex surgeries.

Another important focus for MSF is mental health. The charity has been monitoring the number of suicides in the country and has found a significant spike in the number of suicide incidents over the last few years.

“The health situation in Iraq is very difficult and health care is weak. We are trying to bridge the gap left by the government to help the Iraqi citizen, even the private health sector is bad,” said Carlo Henrich, a senior member of MSF, when talking about the challenges facing Iraq’s health sector. Mismanagement, waste of public money, corruption and underfunding from the Iraqi Government are said to be behind the stagnant development of Iraq’s health sector.