mothers die every year in childbirth
child in 11 dies before their fifth birthday
of women in Punjab are married before the age of 17
Women and children, the initial victims
For the people of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), who have been displaced by the conflict affecting this region, there is little chance of returning to their native village. The local health system is very fragile and cannot cope with such an influx of refugees. There are also many natural disasters in the region: floods, landslides and earthquakes, which increase population movement and delay access to care. As is often the case, women and children are the most affected: only 30% of them have access to care. Too many women die during pregnancy or labour, from haemorrhages, various infections or from eclampsia. Too many children die from asphyxia at birth, from diarrhoea or from pneumonia in their early years.
A taboo subject
In the east of the country in the Punjab, cultural and religious practices prevent young girls from obtaining family planning. In this region, where a quarter of the population is between 9 and 19 years old, women are married very young and have many early pregnancies. There is an enormous need for advice and sexual and reproductive healthcare, yet the social workers struggle to address these issues.
Since 2009, Doctors of the World has supported healthcare facilities in KPK. Our mobile medical teams provide general medical and sexual and reproductive health consultations for displaced people in seven health centres. Following the training of medical personnel and social mobilisation, two of these centres are now managed directly by the Ministry of Health.
Workshops are organised in the communities to raise awareness and provide health education, particularly with regard to the immunisation of children and reproductive health. Finally, training focusing harm reduction linked to disasters has also been included in the programme.
Did you know?
On the Afghan border, the tribal zones are the epicentre of the conflict in which the Pakistani army is fighting various groups of Islamic insurgents. They use this mountainous region as a thoroughfare or as a place of occupation, both of which cause massive population displacement.
SUPPORTING THE ADOLESCENTS OF LAHORE
Doctors of the World supports the Ministry of Health with the implementation of the sexual and reproductive health section of its youth health plan. So, since September 2015, the association has been working in the urban and peri-urban areas of Lahore in the 17 centres for adolescents, which have been recently created by the Population Department. Our teams intervene to optimise the operation of these centres, to improve tools and train the medical personnel, particularly on questions of sexual and reproductive health which is suitable for adolescents.
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