War with no end in sight
21 million people in need|Water crisis|Supplies cut off
War in Yemen has now affected over 21 million people. Over half the population of Yemen -– at least 14 million people - do not have adequate access to health care services. 19.3 million do not have sufficient access to potable water or sanitation.
More than 5,800 deaths – roughly half of them civilian – and more than 27,000 injuries have been registered as a result of the violence that began last March, although the true death toll is believed to be far higher.
The WHO’s Representative to Yemen, Dr. Ahmed Shadoul has declared the country’s health system to be “on the verge of breakdown.”
International Medical Corps has supported people in Yemen since 2012. With a staff of around 175 with offices in Sana’a, Aden and Taiz. Initially we worked in Yemen to address development issues, including the growing challenge of child malnutrition. However, since major fighting broke out among warring factions in March 2015 our resources have also been focused on responding to the major humanitarian crisis overtaking the country.
Our teams are responding with lifesaving food, water and health care projects in Sana’a, Taiz, Aden and Lahj and our teams are providing assistance to help health clinics and hospitals through provision of essential supplies and medicines and mobile staff support. However, conditions are deteriorating fast as stocks of fuel, food and medical supplies are running out. The amount of essential supplies that humanitarian groups can bring into the country falls far short of what is required to restore the flow of basic supplies to acceptable levels for Yemen’s hard-pressed population.
Humanitarian space is rapidly shrinking in Yemen amid intensified fighting and insecurity. Despite continued fighting in some neighbourhoods of Taiz City, our mobile medical units are still able to operate in surrounding districts, providing assistance including reproductive health consultations, family planning services, paediatric care and nutrition services for children with severe acute malnutrition and continue to support health facilities that remain accessible.
In the capital, Sana’a, conditions are relatively quiet but tense as residents brace for what they fear could be a major battle for control of the city in the coming months.
We believe it is extremely important to implement a genuine pause in hostilities to allow humanitarian assistance to reach those who need it most. Only the restoration of normal commerce and commercial scale movement of essential goods can alleviate the suffering of millions of civilians in the country.
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Yemen's healthcare system confronts mounting burden
14th March 2016