Kyrgyzstan: meeting humanitarian needs
Unrest in and around Osh and Jalal-Abad last June affected, directly or indirectly, 765 300 people and displaced an estimated 300 000. More than 3000 people were injured, mainly with bullet and other trauma-related wounds. Most were treated in hospitals or primary health care facilities. An estimated 100 000 of the 1.2 million people living in the area are believed to be suffering from varying degrees of psychological trauma. In the most affected communities, around 72% of children are experiencing behavioural changes resulting from the conflict and the prevailing fear and ethnic tension.
A joint report by health agencies working in Kyrgyzstan indicates that the health care delivery network coped relatively well during that period (see the Health Cluster strategy for the crisis in southern Kyrgyzstan below), although access to essential health services was reportedly hampered because of real or perceived constraints stemming from the conflict.
The MoH estimates that most who were treated for wounds require follow-up care, such as physiotherapy, to prevent or reduce further disability. Hospitals and health facilities need support to cope with this second wave and to ensure easy access to essential services, particularly to physical rehabilitation, mental health and psychosocial support, reproductive health and immunization and nutrition services. Amputees and other handicapped people also need orthopaedic devices and adequate access to humanitarian assistance to reintegrate into society.
WHO and the health sector are experiencing severe funding problems, obstructing the provision of much needed health and psychosocial support.
In the 18 June appeal, the Health Cluster requested US$ 7 778 148, of which US$ 793 346 were requested by WHO. But the appeal remains severely underfunded with only 20% of resources requested for urgent health interventions mobilized. Funding gaps are jeopardizing priority needs, particularly psychosocial support and health coordination.