Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Darfur: Medical care ‘inaccessible’ for Darfuris

Source: Radio Dabanga

Health poll by Radio Dabanga indicates lack of geographical and financial access to basic health care

Citizens and displaced people across Darfur pointed out the spreading of diseases, malnutrition and the raise of the mortality rate of children, elders and pregnant women throughout the state, a situation they blame on poverty. They also complained of terrible health services, describing shortages in medications and qualified personnel, as well as the inability to cope with the rising prices of medical care.

In a poll held by radio Dabanga, most of the displaced people admitted to using traditional medicines as a consequence of the lack of available structures in their areas, a method they said would most of the time lead to paralysis or death. The unavailability of medical services is, however, not the only issue, as respondents indicated their inability to afford them anyway. Surgical operations –even minor- and cesareans can only be performed in Darfur’s main cities or Kartoum, and the survey indicates that most patients are left with no other choice but to await death since they are unable to pay for the costs of transportation, medical advice and drugs.

Treatment for malaria alone – a widely-spread illness in Darfur - costs more than 50 Sudanese pounds (about 20USD), hospital admittance costing one pound, medical advice from a doctor 5 pounds, 10 pounds for check-up and 20 pounds for medication, transportation excluded.