Years of political instability and conflict (both internal and external) have limited economic growth in this nation of 200 million people. Nearly 50% of the population lives in poverty, with many still entirely dependent on the agricultural sector. Pakistan does have a modern health care system with an average life expectancy of 64 years. However, child mortality rates reflect a deeper crisis in health care. And compounding the health challenges, the country is vulnerable to large scale natural disasters, particularly earthquakes and floods. Critical health issues:
- Nearly one in ten children dies before the age of 5.
- Infant mortality rates are ten times higher than in the United States.
In Pakistan, we work with local NGOs and the Ministry of Health to provide ongoing medical assistance to address critical health issues as well as immediate and long term disaster recovery aid. See images of our work in Pakistan.
Since 1990, AmeriCares has provided significant aid to Pakistan, including medicines, medical supplies, equipment, health care facilities and nutritional support. AmeriCares has maintained strong ties with many local aid groups and nonprofit organizations, as well as Pakistan's Ministry of Health.
In 2010, Pakistan was devastated by catastrophic flooding, leaving 20 million people homeless.
AmeriCares responded immediately and continues to send aid to remote villages where families who lost everything are still struggling to survive. For twelve months after the disaster, AmeriCares sent more than $6 million in vital humanitarian aid. From delivering critical medicines and supplies, to drilling wells and installing water pumps, to restoring health facilities, AmeriCares helped the people of Pakistan recover and rebuild.
And throughout new flooding in 2011, we continued our village-to-village work to bring help to the beleaguered people of the region, providing humanitarian assistance and helping to rebuild more local clinics. Read more about our Pakistan Disaster Relief
In 2005, a massive earthquake struck northwestern Pakistan, killing 70,000 people, injuring 100,000 and leaving more than 3 million without homes. AmeriCares earthquake response included immediate airlifts of relief supplies, building a fully-equipped, temporary field hospital, a vaccine airlift and the rebuilding of rural health clinics.
The Pakistani government honored AmeriCares with the Star of Sacrifice award for its comprehensive, efficient earthquake response.
AmeriCares also donates medical products to qualified U.S. health care professionals who are traveling to Pakistan 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.