After independence from France in 1960, Ivory Coast became an economic powerhouse through the production of  coffee and cocoa.

Ivory Coast's first president, Felix Houphouet-Boigny ruled the country for 33 years. During his rule, the country witnessed religious and ethnic harmony until his successor was replaced through the country’s first military coup in 1999.

Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) first worked in Ivory Coast in 1990, responding to armed conflict.

Staff Story

Dr Martial Ledecq was working as an MSF surgeon in Banlo

"There were so many patients, we had to stay in the hospital for two full days and nights. We operated around the clock, trying to stabilise the most serious cases. Despite our intensive care and surgical care efforts, two people died.

With the tensions in the region, nearly all the medical and administrative staff had fled Bangolo Hospital. When the MSF team arrived, an Ivorian doctor, anesthetist, and four nurses had remained."

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MSF’s work in Ivory Coast: 2015

MSF in Ivory Coast 2015

3,100 births assisted
134 staff
£2.9 million expenditure

Due to the increase in maternal mortality rates, MSF is working with the Ministry of Health in  Ivory Coast to improve maternal and child health.

In Hambol region, around 50 percent of women give birth at home, and a study undertaken by Epicentre in March 2015 found significant levels of maternal mortality.

We are running a programme in the Centre Hospitalier Régional (CHR) in Katiola, in partnership with the Ministry of Health.

We provide resources and technical support, enabling the CHR to operate a high-quality emergency obstetric and neonatal care unit for complicated cases. We also manage the 20-bed maternity department, three intensive-care beds, two operating theatres and 10 neonatal beds.

In 2015, the facility served as a referral hospital for 98,000 women of child-bearing age, 14,800 pregnant women and 14,000 newborns.

Staff managed 755 obstetric emergencies, high-risk pregnancies and complicated births, dealt with 600 gynaecological emergencies and assisted 2,600 births, 374 of which required caesarean sections.

Find out more in our 2015 International Activity Report.


At the end of 2015, MSF had 152 staff in Ivory Coast. We first worked in the country in 1990. 

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