Afghanistan Humanitarian Bulletin Issue 64 | 01 – 31 May 2017


  • Patients in need of trauma care often can rely only on humanitarian partners for treatment.
  • Communities are forced into displacement in contested, formerly peaceful, areas.
  • An Afghan grandmother speaks of her dire living conditions in displacement.
  • 60 incidents against the health sector have been registered since January.
  • Funding received for the Afghanistan HRP ranks in the global mid-field.


  • Kabul bombing aftermath P.1
  • Situation in Jaghori district P.2
  • Sadiqa’s ordeal in displacement P.3
  • Funding for HRP in global mid-field P.5

Humanitarians asked to fill gaps in trauma care

The bomb blast that killed more than 150 people and wounded more than 300 on 31 May in Kabul was a stark reminder, that medical trauma care remains a priority in Afghanistan. Medical facilities across the capital struggled at times to respond to the influx of victims from one of the bloodiest attacks in over 15 years.

The Emergency Hospital run by the international NGO Emergency, only a few hundred metres from the blast site, treated 69 injured that day, 8 of which were dead on arrival. Toby Lanzer, Humanitarian Coordinator for Afghanistan, visited patients at the hospital in the afternoon, once surgeons, doctors and nurses had taken care of them.

“I came here to pay my respect to the people injured in this heinous attack,” Mr. Lanzer said. “My thoughts are with the thousands of Afghan women, girls, boys and men whose lives have been irrevocably shattered today.”

Before leaving the hospital, he and the Head of OCHA in Afghanistan, Dominic Parker, donated blood.

The Italian NGO Emergency started work in Afghanistan 17 years ago and is currently operating three surgical centres in the country. To improve trauma care in the capital and referral capacities for victims of conflict from rural areas, the hospital opened four additional surgical theatres last year. The expansion was funded with over US$1.3 million from the Common Humanitarian Fund (CHF) - Afghanistan, administered by OCHA.

Humanitarians strive to improve access to essential life-saving service

Intensified conflict across the country is adding further stress on Afghanistan’s already weak health system. Last year, humanitarian partners treated over 100,000 trauma patients, more than 60,000 of which had been wounded by weapons and explosives.

For 2017, partners of the Health Cluster are requesting over $52 million, with the main priority to improve access to essential life-saving services for at 3.8 million people. An important element is strengthening trauma care services at all levels, including establishing so-called First Aid Trauma Posts (FATP) in rural areas.

The NGO Youth Health & Development Organization (YHDO) is one of the partners who established four such posts in Balkh, Logar and Kapisa provinces with $214,000 from the CHF. When 11 people died mid-May because their vehicle rolled over a landmine in Agha District, Logar, the three surviving children received first aid trauma care in such a FATP. Once stabilised, they were transferred to the Emergency Hospital in Kabul for further treatment.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:

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