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Because of the fighting, in #Iraq hundreds of thousands of people are fleeing their homes in search of refuge. 

In the villages near the border with Iraqi Kurdistan, IDPs are occupying schools, mosques and houses under construction. 
In the camps, with a temperature of 45 degrees, men, women and children living in tents are waiting to see what will happen. They need everything: water, electricity, food, medical care ... 

To quickly offer basic health care to displaced people, an EMERGENCY team composed of 2 doctors and a nurse began working in the field of Khanaqin, 10 minutes by car from the front line. 

During the first visit, on Thursday, our team has set up a temporary clinic in a school and visited 18 patients. The diseases they suffer from are for the most part the consequences of poor sanitary conditions of the camp, which is continually expanding gastrointestinal infections, skin infections and respiratory diseases. 
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"It is finally the start of summer, the roses have blossomed in our garden and the EMERGENCY hospital in Kabul is a spectacle. Early in the morning when work starts, you are surrounded by an intense scent that puts you in a good mood. This lightness, however, is cut short, we receive an average of 10 patients every day who are victims of war, wounded by gunshot or blasts... it's crazy. And what's even more crazy is that most of them are children. "

- Lorenzo; EMERGENCY hospital in #Kabul, #Afghanistan 
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Omer is 5, but he weighs the same as a 2-year old child.

At the age of seven months, he was diagnosed with tetralogy of Fallot: a congenital heart defect that causes frequent fits, especially on waking up, after meals, or after crying. These critical spells have various negative consequences and can also lead to convulsions. Without a (difficult) surgical operation, there are no chances of survival for those suffering from this disease.

Omer's family recently moved to Port Sudan, where we have a Paediatric Centre. And that's exactly where we met him: his parents brought him to us after yet another fit. He was unconscious and had stopped breathing. We reanimated him and kept him in hospital. Omer was very lucky: not only does he live in a city where we work, but in those days an EMERGENCY cardiologist was carrying out a screening session at the Port Sudan Paediatric Centre to identify patients to be sent to the "Salam" heart surgery centre in Khartoum for operations.

Sofia, our cardiologist, examined Omer and confirmed the diagnosis. She immediately prescribed treatment to reduce the fits, and put him on a waiting list for an operation at the "Salam", where our heart surgeons will perform the intervention free of charge.

Marsalama Omer! Goodbye Omer! See you in Khartoum.
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This is Madina, our "Health Promoter" in Port Sudan where we launched an "outreach" programme (preventive medicine at local level) about 20 days ago. 

Every week, she heads off to the various communities and meeting points in the area, to offer hygiene/health education and preventive activities aimed at women and children. She explains how to minimise the risk of getting malaria and other infective diseases, gives advice about vaccinations and a healthy diet, monitors the health condition of the children and, when necessary, sends them to our Paediatric Centre in the city.

Madina is a Sudanese girl who has been specifically trained by us, like her colleagues working in Mayo (a refugee camp near the capital Khartoum, where we have a Paediatric Centre), where our "Health Promoters" cycling around in their red t-shirts are now recognised and appreciated by everyone.
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“Afghanistan was voting yesterday to elect Hamid Karzai's successor.

The city was in a state of maximum alert, the roads were deserted, and our hospital in Kabul was already full.By 12 o'clock, 15 wounded had already arrived, 3 of them children. In the last 72 hours, we've taken in 13 patients under the age of 15:

4-year old Bashir from Tagab, with a bullet wound to his abdomen.

8-year old Sohalia from Wardak, injured in the leg by bomb shrapnel.

9-year old Akbar from Wardak, injured in the neck by bomb shrapnel.

15-year old Shirshad from Tagab, with a bomb shrapnel wound to her abdomen.

10-year old Mohammed Wali from Ghazni, hit in the eye by shrapnel.

14-year old Khoja Rafi from Shakerdara, with a foot injury caused by a landmine.

15-year old Mohammed from Ghazni, hit in the back by shrapnel.

10-year old Rozi from Ghazni, hit in the side by shrapnel.

11-year old Jamudullah from Paktya, hit in the head by shrapnel.

11-year old Farid from Faryab, with a bullet wound to her leg.

5-year old Obaidullah from Ghazni, injured in the face by bomb shrapnel.

13-year old Abdul from Ghazni, whose legs were injured by a landmine.

9-year old Reshad from Mirbachakot, with hand wounds.

This is the result of 13 years of war: a hospital full of wounded children”.

-- Emanuele, EMERGENCY coordinator in Afghanistan
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"Sometimes things end really well. Here is Ezekiel, the child wounded in the neck by a stray bullet about ten days ago. 
Today he returned to the Complexe pédiatrique for his first check-up since being discharged. 

All the staff welcomed him with joy: we had been afraid that it might not have continued to heal well but instead he  looks great. 

Today, for all of us, it is a nice day. "

- Marina, EMERGENCY nurse in #Bangui, Central African Republic
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"When I think of the work I am learning here in Kabul in front of the Afghan surgeons I am really amazed... 
45 people, 40 with manual skills and knowledge of neurosurgery, thoracic surgery, general, vascular, and orthopaedic and they do wonderful things. Truly "hats off" to these people, their 
dedication and their desire to teach and share their knowledge with an Italian intern" 

- Lorenzo, EMERGENCY hospital in #Kabul, #Afghanistan 
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In Helmand - a province of southern Afghanistan - there has been fighting for three days. Our hospital in Lashkar-gah received 51 patients. Our ambulances have not stopped travelling between the FAPs and the hospital in Lashkar-gah. 

Last night, our nurse Sangin was transporting a patient struck by a bullet in the abdomen when they found themselves in the middle of a fight between Taliban and Afghan special forces. They could not stop: the patient's condition worsened and to wait until the fighting ended would put his life at risk. The ambulance was hit by a bullet, but they continued on to Lashkar-gah to ensure the necessary care. 

Access to care for the people of Helmand and throughout Afghanistan, is becoming increasingly difficult. 
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Gonanga, Zanzema Gracia and Felix are three of the children treated by our staff at the "Complexe Pédiatrique" in Bangui, in the Central African Republic.

We often tell you about the wounded children who come to us, victims of the fighting that's tearing this country apart. But the damage caused by the war goes well beyond these “direct” victims: there are also many others, perhaps less visible but certainly no less important.

Pathologies like abscesses, infections, typhoid fever - the problems we treated them for - were common even before the war began. The fighting has worsened the situation though: the lack of food and the hard living conditions make it even easier to fall ill, while fear and insecurity convince many people to put off the journey to the hospital for as long as possible.

The result? The children get ill more often, but are only brought to us when they're already in a very serious condition. They are war victims too, because the war is also this: the practical denial of a right - the right to receive medical treatment.

In the meantime, we're here – at the “Complexe Pédiatrique” and at our Paediatric Centre – to provide good, free treatment for whoever needs it.

(Photo by Pieter ten Hoopen)
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We don't yet know the results of the elections in Afghanistan.
But what we do know is that our hospitals are still full, both in Kabul and in Lashkar-gah: all the beds are occupied and the women's and children's ward is packed. 

The war has brought neither peace nor democracy to this country; only endless cases of injuries and death.
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This is Nombete he is 12 years old. 

His mother had sent him on errands and while he was out, fighting broke out in the city. A stray bullet hit him. 
He was brought to the "Complexe pédiatrique" in Bangui, Central Africa, and he is now recovering. 

There are many children and infants, such as Nombete, who we take care of every day in the Central African Republic.

(Photo by Pieter ten Hoopen)
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All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights ‪#‎HealthcareNotWarfare‬ http://ow.ly/xTv86
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