Key medical figures:
• 18,000 outpatient consultations
More than 36,000 refugees were repatriated from Congo to their home province of Équateur, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), in April.
In 2009, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) opened an emergency programme to meet the medical needs of refugees and the host community in Bétou district, Likouala, by expanding and strengthening services in Bétou hospital and health centres in the area. Some 450 patients were admitted to the hospital per month, and between November 2012 and May 2013, 9,800 people were treated for malaria alone.
As many children were suffering from preventable diseases such as tetanus, polio and measles, 13 teams carried out a districtwide, door-to-door vaccination campaign between December 2012 and May 2013, providing 97,500 vaccinations. With the improvement of the security situation in DRC and subsequent repatriation, MSF closed the Bétou project in June. The team had also worked with health authorities Work undertaken by teams in Duékoué and Abobo during the crisis resulted in a need for lifesaving maternal healthcare being identified. Women generally deliver their babies at home with traditional birth attendants and without effective emergency obstetric care when there are complications. This results in unnecessary suffering and the death of mothers and babies. MSF is preparing to open a mother and child health programme with the Ministry of Health in Hambol region in 2014. Care will be provided for complicated deliveries, and antenatal and neonatal emergencies at the hospital in Katiola. to improve national control programmes against tuberculosis, HIV, leprosy and yaws.
Yaws is a contagious but treatable bacterial infection that causes skin lesions and can lead to disfigurement and disability. In the rainforest of northern Congo and in Bétou district, where yaws is endemic, MSF carried out a second round of treatment in April and May, targeting Aka pygmies in remote areas who had not received treatment in the first round.
Cholera emergency response
The cholera emergency response that began in Pointe-Noire in November 2012 was completed in May. In addition to opening a cholera treatment centre in Loandjili hospital and five rehydration centres, MSF trained medical staff and helped authorities implement preventive measures.
Year MSF first worked in the country: 1997