Syrian Arab Republic | News | WHO delivers medical supplies airlifted from Damascus to hard-to-reach areas in north-east Syria


WHO delivers medical supplies airlifted from Damascus to hard-to-reach areas in north-east Syria

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Qamishli, Syria, 19 March 2014 –  The second of a series of airlifts from Damascus supplying the northeastern governorate of Al-Hasakah with medical supplies for more than 335 000 vulnerable and displaced Syrians landed on Tuesday at Qamishli airport.

The plane was loaded with 80 metric tonnes of medicines and medical supplies and an additional 40 metric tonnes are expected to arrive in the coming days.

WHO’s chartered aircraft was loaded with intravenous fluids and life-saving and chronic disease medicines, as well as other urgently needed supplies to support local NGOs, IDP shelters and health facilities.

The aid-flights are part of WHO’s strategy to support people in need in hard-to-reach areas. “These shipments will bring much needed medical supplies to most vulnerable populations in one of the areas most difficult to reach in Syria,” Elizabeth Hoff, WHO Representative to Syria said. She added that the chartered planes have been critical to permit regular delivery of life-saving medicines and medical equipment. As part of the Organization’s commitment to scale up access to health services, WHO will open a sub-office in Qamishli from 23 March.

Al-Hasakah region, with 1.4 million people, was an under-resourced area already prior to the conflict in Syria, and has been particularly affected by the violence. It currently hosts more than 188 000 displaced persons.

WHO is making every effort to provide and distribute medical supplies and equipment to people in need across Syria through health authorities, Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) and local NGO partners. Since January 2014, WHO has supported more than 1.4 million persons inside the war-torn country, in both government- and opposition,-controlled areas.

Press release in Arabic

For more information, please contact:

Rana Sidani
Senior Communication Officer
Media and Communication Unit
WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean
Direct: +20 2 22765552
Mobile: +20 1099756506

E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Key health-related statistics

Total population (000s)

21 124

Total health expenditure (% of GDP)

3.0

Maternal mortality ratio (per 100 000 live births)

52

Primary health care centres and units (per 10 000 population)

1.0

Total life expectancy at birth (years)

73.1

Source: Country statistical profiles (2013)

See Syrian Arab Republic country profile