A year in review
In 2019, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) ran medical programmes in Jammu and Kashmir, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Manipur, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Chhattisgarh in India, addressing some of the country’s most pressing health issues and emergencies.
Three years after MSF set up a project in Meerut, UP, to support the state Ministry of Health (MoH) to develop an effective, decentralized and simplified programme to diagnose and treat hepatitis C infections, the project was handed over to MoH in December 2019. Since 2017, MSF has been able to cure over 3,000 patients. Our teams also actively engaged at the community level to raise awareness about prevention from hepatitis C in western UP.
The abrogation of Article 370 by the Indian government in August 2019 and the subsequent online service blackout led MSF/DWBI to reassess the mental health status of the people visiting our counselling clinics and review activities with various stakeholders of mental health services in relation to needs in Kashmir Valley.
In 2019, MSF in Delhi, where it has been running a clinic since 2015 for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), included local accredited social health activist workers into our outreach program, central to the project’s significant increase in patient numbers for this year.
MSF also expanded its services in Manipur with a new clinic facility in Chakpikarong while health promotion efforts were intensified in Moreh, Churachandpur, and Chakpikarong.
We marked the third year of our programme in Jharkhand to treat severe acute malnutrition (SAM), a medical condition that leaves children under five at the risk of death by weakening their immune system. Using a decentralised, community-based approach in the state’s Chakradharpur block, MSF treated 1,934 children for SAM.
With India recording the highest incidence of TB and drug-resistant TB in recent years, the disease remains an important area of focus for MSF in the country. Apart from running programmes in Maharashtra and Manipur to treat drug-sensitive and drug-resistant patients in a holistic manner, MSF worked to safeguard and expand access to the new anti TB drugs bedaquiline and delamanid. Our teams also continued to provide antiretroviral treatment to people living with HIV in these states.
For 2020 and beyond, MSF India remains committed to providing free medical care and to advocating for better health outcomes for
our patients and increased access to essential drugs for all.