Health consequences from earthquakes in Afghanistan are described as “staggering.”
The temperatures have begun to decrease and are now in the single digits.
According to the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), over 21,500 homes have been confirmed destroyed and an additional 17,000 have been severely damaged in the affected areas. So far, approximately two-thirds of these areas have been assessed. The total number of people affected is estimated to be 154,000.
Critical psychosocial support
Approximately 7,500 pregnant women are included in that figure, a significant number of whom have also experienced the loss of family members.
According to the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the loss of their loved ones has had a devastating impact.
Psychosocial counselors have been sent by the agency to assist individuals in managing their profound grief.
“It is crucial to provide psychosocial support,” stated Faiza Zarie, a counselor. She emphasized the importance of having someone to listen and assist individuals in managing their trauma.
Females also encounter additional obstacles, such as increased chances of avoidable maternal mortality, violence based on gender, and hunger.
The UNFPA is striving to meet the demands of reproductive health. They requested a funding appeal of $11.6 million to maintain their efforts in providing essential sexual and reproductive health resources and assistance.
Hospitals, healthcare staff impacted by
The availability of medical treatment has been greatly impacted, as 40 facilities have been reported as damaged. This region already had limited access to essential health services prior to the disaster.
The WHO cautions that approximately 580,000 individuals are experiencing significant disruptions in accessing services.
According to Alaa AbouZeid, the team leader of WHO emergencies in Afghanistan, health workers are facing difficulties due to the disaster. This may be due to the loss of family members or concerns about the safety of health facilities, making it challenging for them to provide necessary care for their communities. He shared this information with reporters in Geneva, reporting from Kabul.
She further stated that the effects on health are immense.
The United Nations agency has been among the initial responders on location, providing assistance to hospitals through medication and resources and coordinating teams for mobile healthcare and nutrition.
To maintain healthcare services, additional funds will be needed. The World Health Organization (WHO) and its partners have initiated a request for $7.9 million to offer assistance over the next half year.