To help address maternal and child health and other pressing health care issues, AmeriCares launched a new partnership with the American Medical Overseas Relief (AMOR), a U.S. non-governmental humanitarian organization that has established and supported several hospitals and clinics in and around Kabul. The partnership is focused on building the capacity of Afshar Hospital just outside of Kabul to provide ever-higher quality of care, particularly in the areas of maternal and child health and nutrition.
Snapshot of Afghanistan:
Decades of war, violence and instability have battered Afghanistan, destroying its economy and infrastructure and turning many of its people into refugees. Desperate poverty, malnutrition and lack of even the most basic health care are particularly lethal for mothers and infants in a country where the majority of women give birth in the home with no access to professional medical assistance. Critical health issues:
- an estimated one out of 6.5 Afghan women dies in childbirth
- third highest infant mortality rate in world
- one in five children do not reach the age of five
- half of all children suffer the devastating health effects of poor nutrition
See images of our work in Afghanistan
AmeriCares has been active in Afghanistan since 1988.
In the early years AmeriCares worked through a partnership with Help the Afghan Children (HTAC) and HTAC’s sister organization, Afghan Health and Development Services (AHDS), to supply medicines, medical supplies and humanitarian aid to indigent and vulnerable populations served by hospitals, clinics, schools and refugee camps.
In 2011, AmeriCares partnered with American Medical Overseas Relief (AMOR), and NGO that administers Afshar Hospital. The hospital opened its doors in 2009 on the outskirts of Kabul and serves approximately 40,000 extremely poor people who’ve had no access to medical care. All medical services are provided by local physicians, nurses and support staff. The medical staff also provides care at nearby orphanages and shelters for street children and at a sister clinic in the poorest inner-city slum of Kabul.
In conflict situations, fewer and fewer resources are available to provide for the health and welfare of women and children. AmeriCares through its partnership with AMOR is providing critical support for the health care and medical needs of this vulnerable population through the Afshar Hospital. The hospital’s primary focus is on maternal care and pediatrics, treating 4,000 pregnant women each year and delivering 100 babies each month. AmeriCares and AMOR are also working together to establish a neonatal nursery within the hospital to provide life-saving treatments for pre-term and low birth weight newborns.
In 2011 AmeriCares oversaw the first-ever shipment of XANGO meal packs to Afghanistan. The first distribution of the supplemental nutrition to indigent mothers, children and families in refugee camps, hospitals and clinics produced impressive, immediate improvements in both weight and overall health. AmeriCares and AMOR will continue the meal pack distribution to help address the multiple, long term health consequences of poor nutrition.
AmeriCares also donates medical products to qualified U.S. health care professionals who are traveling to Afghanistan 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 Afghanistan
AmeriCares, through a donation from Johnson & Johnson of 24 million doses of Vermox (known generically as mebendazole), is in the first year of a program to promote better child health by treating intestinal worms in vulnerable populations and communities. Doses have already been distributed to partners in 16 countries.
AmeriCares is partnering with American Medical Overseas Relief to provide a safer birth environment and better health outcomes for mothers and babies, with the donation of clean birth kits to Afshar Hospital in Kabul.
As part of a global effort to reduce micronutrient deficiency and increase child survival rates, AmeriCares and Vitamin Angels have launched a partnership to provide donated high-dose Vitamin A to select health care institutions serving children at risk.
XANGO has partnered with AmeriCares to deliver meal packs where they are most needed, in countries with high levels of malnutrition, including Afghanistan, Cambodia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Somalia, Malawi, Mexico, Nicaragua and the Philippines.
AmeriCares is working to save the lives of mothers and babies in Afghanistan and around the world, with deliveries of fetal heart Dopplers, medicines, supplies, and crucial nutritional supplements.
Stamford, Conn. - Dec. 19, 2012 - AmeriCares is launching a new project with American Medical Overseas Relief to decrease maternal and infant mortality rates in Afghanistan, which are among the highest in the world. Women in Afghanistan give birth to an average of six children in their lifetime, and 85 percent of deliveries occur at home without medical assistance.
AmeriCares recently sent eight tons of medical aid valued at over $5.2 million to support the ever-growing health care and medical needs of women and children.
The Afghan people receive medical supplies, disaster aid and humanitarian relief from AmeriCares. Learn more and find out how you can help Afghanistan.