The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre announced a US$2 million grant to the World Health Organization for upgrading the Sadar District Hospital in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, to enhance health care services for Rohingyas and their host communities.
WHO leads and coordinates the efforts of over 100 partners managing more than 270 health facilities, while also providing medicines and medical equipment, diagnostics, guidelines and trainings and building laboratory capacity. The existing facilities in and around Cox’s Bazar have reported a 150-200% increase in patients, overwhelming current capacity and resources.
At present, all patients with more serious conditions are referred to and treated at Sadar District Hospital. To meet the increased needs, the hospital needs to scale up staff, medical and surgical supplies, bed capacity, and basic commodities.
“KS Relief is pleased to support our partner WHO in providing much needed health services to the Rohingyas and host communities in Cox’s Bazar,” said H.E. Dr. Abdullah Al Rabeeah, KS Relief's Supervisor General and Advisor at the Royal Court. “We trust these funds will go a long way to help improve people’s health and lives in what is one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises.”
An estimated 688 000 Rohingyas have crossed over to Bangladesh since 25 August 2017, joining nearly 212 500 others from earlier waves. Nearly 1.3 million people are being targeted for humanitarian assistance, including recently arrived Rohingyas and the host communities.
As a group, the Rohingyas’ health have been neglected, many have arrived in Cox’s Bazar with poor health statuses and health behaviours. For example, many Rohingya children’s immunization statuses are very low, around 50% of Rohingya children are malnourished and anaemic, and some two-thirds of pregnant women have no or very limited access to obstetric care.
“Over the next year, the much-needed funds from KS Relief will help upgrade Sadar District Hospital to cope with the increased demand for emergency obstetric care, trauma services and diarrheal disease management, for both in-patient and out-patient services,” said Dr Bardan Jung Rana, WHO Representative to Bangladesh, a.i.
For example, the KS Relief funds will be used to double the number of in-patient beds from 250 to 500, and to improve trauma and emergency obstetric care services.