Syria Civil Conflict
- Active Emergency
- January 2011 -Present
- Syria/Middle East
A Grim History of Conflict
Since 2011, deadly conflict in Syria has created a humanitarian crisis affecting more than 11 million people. The United Nations Refugee Agency estimates that up to 7.8 million Syrians have fled the country and another 6.2 million have been internally displaced by the fighting. Fewer than half of Syria's doctors remain in the country; health facilities have been targets of bombing and violence. According to the World Health Organization, most public hospitals and health clinics in Syria are closed or only partially functioning, and there is virtually no access to health care across many parts of the country.
The total value of our aid for the Syria crisis since 2012 is more than $16 million, which has supported health care services in Syria, as well as medical care and health programming for Syrian families seeking refuge in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.
Our Health Programs
Medicine and medical supplies for health facilities in Syria. Americares sends regular shipments—some as large as 29 tons—to partners who have health programs inside Syria. Critical medicine and supplies include antibiotics, intravenous fluids, safe birthing kits and chronic disease medications. The medical aid is distributed to medical facilities in rural western Aleppo, Hama, Homs and Idlib through partners Human Appeal and the Syrian American Medical Society, which supports over 100 medical facilities in Syria, including underground trauma hospitals.
Mobile health in Syria. Americares will continue to provide the support needed to operate a mobile medical unit in rural Western Aleppo, Syria. In one three-month period, with Americares help, our partner Human Appeal provided care to more than 6,000 Syrian men, women and children through the mobile clinic—for many Syrians, the only care available to them.
Funds for hospital stays for Syrians in Lebanon. Part of hospital costs for vulnerable Syrian refugees are covered by the United Nations Refugee Agency, but Syrians still face a bill for up to 25 percent of the cost. Collaborating with Caritas Switzerland, Americares is providing funds to cover the gap. The program also provides cash to families if the breadwinner cannot work due to a hospital stay.
Mental health support for health workers. Providing health care amidst bombing and violence can cause stress and trauma among the health workers, putting them at risk for illness. Providers caring for Syrians who have experienced violence or depredation are also at higher risk of vicarious trauma. Americares trains medical staff caring for Syrians in Syria or in bordering countries to recognize and alleviate signs of stress in themselves and their co-workers.
Expanding care for chronic disease patients. Stress and trauma can worsen or even trigger chronic disease such as high blood pressure and diabetes. Americares collaborated with Jordan’s Royal Health Awareness Society to add stress relief to an existing chronic disease program in a community near the Syrian border. Early results show that patients’ physical health improved when they included stress reduction such as walking, mindfulness and socializing in their daily routine.
“Thousands of lives are at stake. The medicine we are providing will be put to use immediately to help save lives and improve the health of the most vulnerable in Syria.”