Iraq | News | WHO support for prosthetic rehabilitation centre brings hope for patients with disabilities

WHO support for prosthetic rehabilitation centre brings hope for patients with disabilities

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JasminJasmin, a remarkable young man, calmly waits for his turn to receive his prosthetic limb

12 March 2019 – Thirteen-year-old Jasmin from Badush village in Mosul calmly sits despondent and quiet on his wheelchair at the WHO-supported emergency orthopaedic centre in Sulymania. His face bears the scars of recent injuries; his smile is mixed with joy and sadness but testifies to his hope for a better future.

"I want to be able to walk on my own again," says Jasmin, with his uncle by his side. “I want to go back to school and be a policeman so that I can keep law and order in my community,” he says.

"I'm doing my best to remain positive about my situation and very much looking forward to when I will be able to walk on my own two feet again,” he adds.

Jasmin and other patients wait for their prosthetic limbs at the emergency orthopaedic centre in SulymaniaJasmin and other patients wait for their prosthetic limbs at the emergency orthopaedic centre in SulymaniaTens of thousands of people have lost limbs in Iraq’s 4-year crisis. Jasmin is one of the hundreds of beneficiaries who have received support from WHO and the Italian nongovernmental organization EMERGENCY. This support ensures the referral of patients from Mosul to the orthopaedic centre in Sulymania free of charge.

In October 2017, an improvised explosive device went off injuring Jasmin and killing 2 of his brothers while they played at home. His brothers died instantly but Jasmin survived although doctors were unable to save his legs. “After the explosion, I took Jasmin to a hospital in west Mosul where both of his legs were amputated. However, months later a mobile team from Handicap International visited our village and referred us to a prosthetic centre in Mosul, and eventually, we were brought to Sulymania Orthopaedic unit,” said Jasmin’s uncle, Mahmoud.

Mahmoud adds that Jasmin lost both his parents and another brother during the Mosul conflict, and his only hope for a better future depends on his ability to regain his mobility and independence with his new prosthetic limbs.

Inside the emergency orthopaedic centre workshop where prosthetics are madeInside the emergency orthopaedic centre workshop where prosthetics are madeThe rehabilitation of trauma victims from Mosul is essential for proper reintegration of all war casualties back to their communities, WHO aims to ensure that no one is left behind by collaborating with EMERGENCY, who are running the prosthetics centre.

In this partnership arrangement, WHO fully funds the transfer and treatment of all patients referred from Mosul to the centre. This assistance has been made possible through funds from the German Government.

For more information, please contact:

Pauline Ajello
WHO Communications Officer
(+964) 7729877288
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Ajyal Sultany
WHO Communications Officer
(+964) 7740 892 878
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Gheeda Mayahi
WHO Communications Officer
(+964) 7827886765
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Key health-related statistics

Total population (000s) 37 140
Total health expenditure on health (% of general government expenditure) 6.5
Maternal mortality ratio (per 100 000 live births) 50
Number of primary health care units and centres (per 10 000 population) 0.7
Total life expectancy at birth (years) 69.8

Source: Framework for health information systems and core indicators for monitoring health situation and health system performance, 2018

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