“Every day, more people arrive, and the numbers are increasing. In turn, this increases the need for improved health services, food and shelter,” says Ali Mohammed Dawoud, MSF medical activity manager.
In June, MSF teams started supporting three Ministry of Health (MoH) run clinics in providing primary healthcare in Um Sangour and Al Alagaya refugee camps, as well as in Khor Ajwal, which hosts Sudanese population displaced from Blue Nile state. More recently, MSF has also started supporting the inpatient therapeutic feeding centre at the hospital in Al Kashafa refugee camp, where there are about 50 severely acute malnourished children admitted, some of whom are referred from other refugee camps.
Um Sangour, a camp meant to host about 30,000 people, now houses over 70,000. The needs are huge and growing in the overcrowded camps. “The most common illnesses impacting the community here, especially children under the age of five, are suspected measles, pneumonia, and malnutrition,” says Ali.
“The death toll was already high when we arrived. We received an average of 15 to 20 suspected measles cases daily, with six recorded deaths in the first week. Tragically, most of these were children under the age of five. We partnered with the Ministry of Health, who provided us with resources to set up an isolation centre to provide these children with the necessary care.”
“Today we conduct an average of 300 to 350 consultations daily, including 30 to 40 cases of suspected measles,” Ali continues. “We also have a delivery room for pregnant women and assist one to two births per day and conduct about 20 to 30 follow-ups (antenatal care services) for pregnant women. Our routine immunisation services include 30 to 40 children per day.”