The conflict between the government of Iraq and ISIL resulted in millions of Iraqis without health care access. The ongoing conflict has created widespread insecurity in the region, and this insecurity keeps people away from an area which in turn keeps funding very low.
Humanitarian organizations, including the World Health Organization (WHO), have only received $5.1 million out of the $61 million they need from the international community to provide health care services. As a result, 84 percent of frontline programs have been stopped. This has left 3 million Iraqis without health care access.
Vital services include trauma care, primary healthcare, outbreak detection and management, immunizations, and reproductive health care services.
According to a spokesperson for WHO, Tarik Jasarevic, 5.8 million kids need to be vaccinated in 2015 and 2016. It is imperative these children receive polio vaccinations considering cases of polio have occurred in Iraq in 2014 — fortunately none have been reported since April 2015. Currently, the polio vaccination campaign has a $45 million funding gap.
U.N. agencies and their partners are looking to fundraise $498 million to cover costs of shelter, food, water and other life-saving services for the rest of 2015. This is a challenging task, given only 15 percent of it was secured as of July 2015.
Despite the insecurity in the region, shouldn’t the international community provide the necessary funding, given the unfortunate situation 3 million Iraqis are in? Such aid would also keep those affected from having to resort to desperate means and join radicalized organizations.
– Paula Acevedo