In a world first involving the use of the WHO’s $500 million health services workforce, pharmacies and food suppliers in the Democratic Republic of Congo have been calling on WHO staff to sail before the World Health Organization.
The union represents hundreds of private and public sector pharmacists and food producers in the budget for health services staff.
UN reports – which provide more information about the healthcare situation of those most at risk of dying – give an indication of the health challenges facing those working in conflict-affected settings.
UN health emergencies generally show how the world is catching up through punching holes in the health system of conflict-hit nations. But in some studies, it shows what actually happens around the corner, when peace and development come together.
Many question what’s truly happening behind closed doors, in unpatrolled communities whose staff have been exposed to trauma.
UN staff, for example, have reported lives cut short by lack of protective equipment or medicine during armed groups or other humanitarian missions. Children who can’t communicate to their physicians are often restrained by gangs or charged for killing.
In a preview of the new report on Congo’s future, the agency described the dramatic rise in cases, including a spike that killed 18 people.
“On a daily basis there are situations that are beyond our control,” said Joanne Krzywicka, executive executive director of the Association of Pharmacists in eastern Congo.
“I think the majority of pharmacists – particularly in eastern Congo – would admit that there are opportunities to address this.”
While other health systems experienced rises, they weren’t causing problems individuals or local communities, the agency said.
However, MONDE NEW GOODS, the journal of the COVID-19 Working Group, reviewed the WHO’s response period. Figures released earlier in 2020 show more than 2,000 medical staff have been infected since mid-March.
These new numbers could reduce the world-wide mortality toll, the report said.
Earlier this week it released the first figures on frontline health workers, including a full list of 59 WHO field workers and their contacts, and hospitals.
ITA, the French for understanding, reported the deaths of three medical workers in government health services in eastern Congo during an April 19-20 war. More than 170 staff were also infected.
Other key findings of the panel, including views that health staff need to be protected and better equipped, are published in the WHO’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The research questioned the ethics behind WHO management of a conflict zone in Democratic Republic of Congo, a part of which has been swept with conflict since 2014.
The WHO has faced criticism for its October 2014 strategy to combat Ebola from locals and international groups. It said more mainstream funding is needed to ultimately defeat the disease. Common public funding means aid groups and individual donors should be paid separately for carrying out out trials, it said.
In response, the U.S. and Great Lakes Rivers United (GLRU) demanded more aid in that conflict.