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Attacks on Health Increasing in Conflict-Ridden Countries

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July 21, 2015

Medical care personnel and facilities have become a target in many countries beset by conflict and civil unrest, according to a new report, “Attacks on Health: Global Report,” which describes violence against health workers, medical facilities, and patients, as well as interference with access to health care that has been occurring from January 2014 to April 2015 in 17 countries, including Syria, Ukraine, South Sudan, and Afghanistan (http://bit.ly/1LkKJQM).

A recent report suggests violent attacks on medical facilities and health workers is increasing globally.

M. J. Friedrich

The general trend of violence against health workers, medical facilities, and patients is increasing around the world, according to this second joint report from the Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition and Human Rights Watch. The precise number of incidents is uncertain, as there is currently no global system for reporting attacks, a situation that underscores the need for greater international efforts to systematically report and ultimately protect health care services.

The new report urges the World Health Organization to fast-track its initiative to develop systems to monitor attacks on medical facilities and personnel. More must also be done to protect health workers and hold perpetrators of violence accountable.

  read more at JAMA

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