Malaysia + 1 more

QFFD, Qatar Charity coordinate to implement projects for Rohingya refugees in Malaysia

Qatar Charity (QC) and the Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) continue coordination to carry on implementing the projects of the $50mn grant by His Highness Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani the Amir of Qatar for Rohingya refugees in Malaysia.

The grant projects cover three main areas: health, education and economic empowerment.

The work started in the health sector in October 2019, as agreements have been signed with the Malaysian National Welfare Foundation, an agency under the women, family, and community development minister, and three civil society institutions of proven competence in the medical field have been selected to carry out several projects within the medical area. The budget allocated for the health program is estimated at 14.7 million dollars over three years.

The health activities include six major programs, which are setting up five comprehensive primary health centers, operating four mobile clinics to cover the same peripheral areas inhabited by refugees, adopting the health awareness and education program for Rohingya refugees, providing necessary vaccinations for children, establishing medical shelters to receive patients who need special followup, and Patient Referral Program to provide appropriate medical care.

The Qatari initiative works on the improvement of the refugee situation in Malaysia, especially as the official figures of United Nations confirm the presence of more than 178,000 refugees and asylum-seekers registered with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Malaysia.

The initiative aims to increase the percentage of refugees having access to primary health care services. The assessment of the health, social and economic situation of refugees from Myanmar in Malaysia has been carried through conducting a quick survey targeting all those involved in offering health services for refugees in Malaysia such as the Malaysian Ministry of Health, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and Malaysian NGOs.

Health Centers

Aiming to facilitate the refugees' access to primary health care services, the Qatari initiative works to furnish, equip and operate five comprehensive health care centers in central Malaysia (Selangor and Kuala Lumpur), in the north (Kadah) and in the south (Johor), as these areas have the largest number of refugees.

Mobile Clinics

The initiative is working on the launch of four mobile medical clinics to contribute to facilitating access to primary health care services.

The goal of mobile clinics is to not only conduct medical examination and provide primary health care services, but also vaccinate children, promote health awareness, give advice in a number of areas, including nutrition, personal hygiene, and risk factors for chronic diseases, in addition to dispensing basic drugs, especially medicines for children and women, and providing care for chronic diseases.

Children Vaccination

Support for the vaccination program for refugee children has been approved in Malaysia to meet the urgent need of children for vaccination services. The program aims to provide basic vaccination doses to 24,000 children, over three years, according to the vaccination system of Malaysia.

Patient Referral

The initiative also contributes to providing secondary health care services to refugees through the referral program for critical cases and complicated deliveries. This program targets 1,200 patients over 3 years, in cooperation and coordination with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and hospitals certified by the Malaysian Ministry of Health.

Health Shelters

The initiative adopts the health care shelter program, due to the poor financial situation of refugees in Malaysia, which creates great difficulty for the refugees to follow up their treatment, especially patients who need to see a doctor more than once, who are waiting for the results of medical examinations, or who need special care. The initiative, therefore, works to establish, furnish, equip, and operate five health shelters for a period of three years, in addition to providing housing, nutrition, and case follow-up services.

Health Promotion

Through the Refugee Health Promotion Program in Malaysia, the initiative works, in cooperation with health partners, to implement the health promotion project to ease the main barriers to refugees’ access to health care, which are a lack of literacy, lack of awareness of individual rights to health care, and linguistic and cultural differences.

This is carried out through training health workers, who are chosen from among the refugees themselves to educate the refugees about of health care, health rights, methods of accessing health care, and personal hygiene, and provide guidance on mental health and psychological support services.


The first health center was inaugurated in November 2019, and it started working in January 2020 after obtaining the necessary permits.

Despite the challenging situationsthe world still is going through, due to the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, the work continues, as the remaining four clinics have been set up, and the restoration, furnishing and finishing work have been completed, with the exception of one center, which has recently received a permit.
The number of operating clinics will be five by the end of the current.

Some 11,687 refugees benefited from primary and secondary health care services and specialized medical services.

The mobile clinics are back to work, with a medical team going twice a week to each clinic to provide free treatment to refugees.

As for the health education project, several trainings have been organized for health workers, benefiting 3,071 participants until the end of September.

With regard to the vaccine project, it is expected that work on children's vaccines will start at the end of November 2020.

Besides, there is a medical shelter in Kuala Lumpur, and the rest of the centers are being furnished and equipped with the necessary equipment, while the discussions on patients referrals to hospitals are still ongoing.