90% of Health Centers Likely to Be Closed in Afghanistan
Kabul – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has warned that 90 percent of health clinics in Afghanistan could be closed.
Due to the crisis in Afghanistan’s health system, 90 percent of health centers are in danger of closing, according to the ICRC’s new report, released on (Friday, January 7th).
The agency said that the former government was heavily dependent on foreign aid to pay the salaries of civil servants, however, now with the rise of the Taliban and the blocking of this aid, many challenges have arisen.
According to the committee, the freezing of the Central Bank of Afghanistan’s assets by donor countries has created a major financial crisis for Afghanistan.
The citizens in Afghanistan are increasingly unable to meet their basic needs, and that the country’s economy and public services are in danger of collapsing, the committee added.
In addition, the ex-regime relied for about 75 percent of its general expenses on external sources. In particular, almost 30 million Afghans were dependent on health services through a World Bank-managed program.
Therefore, more than 90 percent of the country’s clinics are now expected to be closed, depriving millions of people of basic health care.
Moreover, the fourth wave of Covid-19 and malnutrition are threatening the people of Afghanistan.
Furthermore, food insecurity is likely to deepen in 2022 as Afghanistan faces food shortages, rapidly rising food prices, and persistent droughts, the (ICRC) warned.
On the other hand, hunger may lead to more displacement of the Afghan people because according to the ICRC, a study conducted in several provinces in 2021 identified food shortages as a major cause of internal displacement.
However, the committee notes that a shadow crisis is looming for Afghan women and girls and that a range of communities in Afghanistan is at greater risk than ever for gender-based violence, child marriage, exploitation, and abuse.
The humanitarian organizations operating in Afghanistan are not safe from the economic crisis and that it is essential that these organizations continue to work to pay staff and suppliers of items needed by the people, the committee stated.
Meanwhile, the warnings were issued by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) at a time when, according to the United Nations, Afghanistan is experiencing widespread poverty by mid-2022, and 97 percent of Afghanistan’s population is currently poor.
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Source: Hasht-e Subh Daily