AmeriCares partners with an NGO and a medical school in Senegal to deliver critical medicines and medical supplies to a broad network of clinics and hospitals to improve primary health care with a focus on health services in rural areas, treatment of chronic and communicable diseases along with maternal and child health.
Snapshot of Senegal:
Located in western Africa, Senegal faces large disparities in health care provision, with over 70% of the nation’s doctors living in the capital city, Dakar. More than half of Senegalese people live on less than $2 a day and many lack access to improved water and sanitation and basic health care. Critical health issues:
- Very high infant, child and maternal mortality rates -- 72 out of 1,000 children die before age five, and even higher numbers in rural areas
- Huge risk of infectious diseases such as malaria, respiratory infection and diarrhea
Since 1998, AmeriCares has delivered more than $88 million worth of medical aid and humanitarian relief to Senegal. AmeriCares partners with the African American Islamic Institute in Kaolack and Saint Christopher Iba Mar Diop Medical School in Dakar to provide medicines and medical supplies to six hospitals and community clinics in Senegal. Among these is Shif'a al-Asqam Medical Clinic, located in the vital market town of Medina-Kaolack. This clinic uses donated medicines and supplies to serve a rural community of 100,000 men, women and children. With a focus on maternal and child health, the clinic helps hundreds of patients each month.
In addition to providing basic health care, AmeriCares was part of an effort led by the World Health Organization (WHO) to eliminate trachoma - a highly infectious and very painful eye disease that can result in blindness. In addition to donating a valuable medication that cures the disease, AmeriCares sent surgical kits to equip surgeons with the tools necessary to perform a delicate operation to restore vision for patients afflicted with trachoma. Over 500 sight-saving surgeries were performed in outreach camps and district health centers using the donated kits.
In 2009, deadly flooding in Burkina Faso and Senegal left over 200,000 people homeless. Senegal was hard hit by disease as a result of the flooding, including over 3,300 cases of malaria. Many families had no emergency shelter and had to live in homes surrounded by stagnant water that provides the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes and water-borne diseases.
To help flood survivors, AmeriCares sent emergency medicines and medical supplies including critical antibiotics, infection control supplies and pain and fever medicines.
AmeriCares also donates medical products to qualified U.S. health care professionals who are traveling to Senegal to provide charitable medical care. Through this program, donated medicines and medical supplies reach impoverished and isolated communities where even basic medical care is inaccessible to the poor or often non-existent. AmeriCares donations cure infections, relieve pain, help patients manage chronic diseases and make life-changing surgeries possible.
Recent News from Senegal
Abdullahi Ndiaye is a 90-year-old father of 13 who lives in Senegal. In a country where the average life expectancy for a man is 50 years, Abdullahi has already outlived most of his peers. In Senegal, where there is only one doctor for every 2,000 people, not much attention is given to health care for the elderly.