Eight million children in Yemen do not have access to healthcare, according to the Save the Children report ”Struggling to Survive: Stories from Yemen’s Collapsing Health System”.
The report, which was released on December 20, contains interviews with doctors and parents in the country ravaged by a war that since March 2015 has been between Houthi rebels and former president Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, backed by a Saudi-led international coalition.
The report shows that infant mortality is rising in Yemen and that at least 1,219 children have died as a direct result of the war and that 10,000 others have lost their lives due to indirect causes linked to the conflict, such as the chronic lack of medical supplies and personnel. The healthcare More than 270 health facilities have been damaged as a result of the conflict and recent estimates suggest that more than half of 3,500 assessed health facilities are now closed or only partially functioning, while there is a lack of qualified personnel as many have been forced to flee their homes.
Hilel Mohammed al-Bahri, Deputy Manager of Al-Sabeen Hospital in Sana’a, has seen a 300 percent increase in the price of most medicines since the war began in March 2015 making treatment unaffordable to the hospitals and most families. ”We have a lack of medicine and salary for doctors and employees,” Al-Bahri said. ”We count on income from the patients who pay small fees. But if we need maintenance or a spare part for our hospital equipment, we don’t have the money.
We don’t have parts for devices because of the blockade. We can only put babies younger than nine months old in the ICU. We don’t have room for the older babies. We have only 20 beds for ICU units yet we are the only children’s hospital in the area.”
A WHO report release in November stated that 7,000 people had been killed since the beginning of the conflict and almost 37,000 injured, while 21 million were in need of healthcare assistance.