The First Baby Born in Azraq Refugee Camp

Dhiba is the mother to a three-week-old girl, Amnah, who has a unique honor- she is the first baby born in Azraq Camp. Dhiba was nine months pregnant when she, her husband, and their five children were transported from the Syrian-Jordan border to Azraq Camp. During the journey, the truck shook wildly, and Dhiba feared that she may lose her baby.

Dhiba arrived at Azraq Camp, and the family settled into their new residence. Typically, when pregnant women in the camp start showing signs of early labor, they are transported by ambulance to a Jordanian hospital near the camp. The International Medical Corps clinic is designed as a primary healthcare facility for refugees in the camp and doesn’t usually take care of labor and delivery. When Dhiba went into labor, she was transported by ambulance to the International Medical Corps clinic; however, her labor progressed beyond the point where a referral was in the best interest of the patient and her baby, and the decision was made to deliver the baby within the clinic. After 10 minutes of labor in the clinic, on July 4, 2014, Amnah was born. Following the birth and the assessment of her and her baby girl, Dhiba returned to her caravan to rest, and her physician, Dr. Hamzah, visited to ensure the health of the mother and baby. Dhiba credits the work of Dr. Hamzah and the International Medical Corps medical staff for the health of her baby and adds that “if there was no clinic, it would have been a very serious situation.” She states that she feels “safe because the clinic is there to provide services for [her] and [her] family.” Indeed, this feeling of safety is key to Dhiba and her family- the name Amnah translates to “Safe” in English.

International Medical Corps operates a 24-hour clinic in the Azraq refugee camp in central Jordan which houses over 14,000 Syrian refugees. The clinic provides primary healthcare, mental healthcare and reproductive health services. International Medical Corps provides refugees with a high standard of care and will play a central role in protecting the health of Amnah and future generations born at Azraq Camp.

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