Today, Afghanistan has one of the lowest life expectancies (50 years) and one of the highest infant mortality rates (119 deaths per live 1000 births) in the world. Continued armed conflict makes safety tenuous for civilians who also find it difficult to obtain basic services. What’s more, the areas of greatest need are often ones that remain inaccessible to international aid organizations due to security concerns.
Despite the security conditions, International Medical Corps has provided health services for vulnerable populations in Afghanistan for 30 years. We aim to improve the quality of life and health status of Afghans through integrated interventions and by strengthening the capacity of the public health system. We focus on: 1) strengthening the capacity of the Ministry of Public Health, 2) fostering fundamental behavior change at the community-level and 3) using sustainable interventions.
Our programming in Afghanistan encompasses four key strategic objectives: improving the accessibility and quality of preventative and curative healthcare service delivery at the community and facility levels; increasing the professional capacity and specialized skills of health care workers and support staff; integrating preventative approaches to maternal-child health, public nutrition, mental health, gender-based violence, and other critical sub-sectors; and addressing basic needs in the area of emergency preparedness and response for communities at risk of rapid-onset natural disasters, communicable disease outbreaks, and/or increased incidents of armed conflict.
International Medical Corps in Afghanistan has extensive experience and technical capacity in delivering primary, secondary and tertiary-level health care services; training community health workers and health facility professionals; implementing hospital management reforms in partnership with the Ministry of Public Health; preparing for and responding to natural disasters, including severe winter, flooding, and earthquakes; as well as a number of other integrated relief and development projects.