Feeds MSF

War in Sudan exacerbates humanitarian needs in South Sudan

Before April 2023, 30 to 50 severely malnourished children were admitted each month to the inpatient malnutrition treatment centre at MSF’s hospital in Malakal town. Since the outbreak of war in Sudan, the number of severely malnourished children admitted to the facility has increased by 200 per cent. Children who are malnourished are more vulnerable to other life-threatening diseases.

“Malnutrition increases the risk of infection, particularly among children under five, who are more likely to die from diseases such as meningitis, measles, yellow fever, cholera and malaria,” says Dr Eltigani Osman, MSF medical coordinator.

Water shortages across the region are forcing people to collect water from rivers. Drinking untreated water, which may be contaminated, poses additional health risks, particularly in a region prone to cholera outbreaks. These risks are likely to increase with the approaching rainy season, which is expected to cause serious flooding across the region, contaminating wells and boreholes and hindering the humanitarian response. Flooding on the Sudanese side of the border could push even more people to flee to South Sudan.

Aid organisations are currently struggling to respond to the crisis and assist everyone in need. Since April 2023, MSF has been running a clinic at the main border crossing and two mobile clinics around Renk and Bulukat, which treat around 190 patients each day, as well as supporting Renk hospital. However, this is not enough, and the scale of the crisis demands a much larger international response.  

“The humanitarian response remains inadequate to the reality of the needs, in a context where there is already considerable strain on the health system,” says Iqbal Huda, MSF head of mission. “We urgently call on international donors to allocate funding to address the needs of the returnees, refugees, and host communities in South Sudan. This must include the provision of food, water, shelter, sanitation, and medical care, as well as the means for people to continue their journeys.” 

Fonte original msf.org

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