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13 Dec 13 02 Jan 14

CAR photostory: Situation at Bangui airport remains dire

Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders' (MSF) mobile emergency team is providing round-the-clock medical care at Bangui airport, following an outbreak of violence that has swept through the capital of the Central African Republic since 5th December. MSF’s airport clinic is addressing the medical needs of more than 40,000 displaced people who have sought refuge at the airport.

“It’s a very difficult situation. Sanitary conditions are deplorable and people are living in fear,” said Rosa Crestani, MSF’s emergency coordinator in Bangui. “Having fled their homes, they are now seeking shelter underneath airplane wings or wherever else they can find it”.

Photostory

Since violence broke out on 5th december, 40,000 people have sought refuge at the city’s airport.

MSF’s mobile emergency team is providing round-the-clock medical care at Bangui airport.

MSF is carrying out over 200 consultations per day, primarily providing dressing for wounds, abscesses and burns and treating respiratory tract infections and malaria.

Having fled their homes, the displaced are now seeking shelter underneath airplane wings or wherever else they can find it.

Although MSF is able to provide medical support, many other needs remain unfulfilled such as food, shelter and protection.

Pregnant women and children are among the most vulnerable, and remain a priority for MSF teams.

An MSF nurse is attending to a wounded man. Medical and surgical emergencies are referred to Castor Maternity, Community Hospital, or a paediatric facility in Bangui supported by the NGO, Emergency.

MSF staff have provided dressing to over 430 wounded people at the airport camp. Some have fled their homes after having been attacked by machete-wielding armed groups.

MSF’s emergency coordinator Tessy Fautsch assisting an elderly woman.

Sanitary conditions at the airport are deplorable. MSF has repeatedly asked UN agencies to deliver food, tents and soap for those displaced in the vicinity of Bangui’s airport, as the situation is untenable.

MSF in Central African Republic

MSF has been present in CAR since 1997. We are currently managing seven regular projects (in Batangafo, Boguila, Carnot, Kabo, Ndéle, Paoua and Zémio) and four emergency projects (in Bangui, Bossangoa, Bouca and Bria). In addition, a mobile emergency team is covering the displaced camps of Bangui. By the end of the year, we hope to start activities in the hospitals of Bangassou and Ouango. In total, we provide free medical care to nearly 400,000 people; through our work in seven hospitals, two medical centres and 40 health posts; and we have more than 100 expatriate personnel and about 1,100 local staff in our teams.

Find out more about MSF's work in Central African Republic