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Dire situation in Taiz, Yemen

22 Feb 2017

Twenty months since fighting started in Taiz, the city’s health services have largely collapsed – the result of physical damage to hospitals and of shortages of staff and medical supplies. 

At the same time, people’s living conditions have deteriorated and the price of essentials, including food and water, has soared. A crippled health system, combined with increasingly harsh living conditions, has prompted a decline in people’s health, with particularly acute consequences for vulnerable groups with low immunity such as pregnant women, new-born babies and young children.

Médecins Sans Frontières works on both sides of the conflict in Taiz. In Al Houban we run a mother and child hospital as well as a trauma center to treat the war-wounded. Inside the enclave, we support Al Jomhouri maternity hospital, Yemen-Swedish paediatrics hospital, Al Thawrah and Al Rawdah surgical hospitals.

Our teams are working in 11 hospitals and health centers in Yemen and providing support to another 18 hospitals or health centres in ten governorates: Taiz, Aden, Al-Dhale’, Saada, Amran, Hajjah, Ibb, Hodaida, and Sanaa, with nearly 1,600 staff including 82 international staff - making it among our largest missions in the world in terms of personnel.

The humanitarian situation in Taiz is not unique. Across the governorates in Yemen where MSF works, our teams witness the humanitarian and medical challenges facing the population. Yemenis are victims of both the direct and indirect consequences of this deadly and destructive war; access to quality, affordable healthcare is severely compromised; and after almost two years of war, humanitarian and medical aid is still failing to meet people’s most basic needs.