MSF mental health counselor talking to the newly arrived people who fled from NE Syria to Iraq. © MSF/Hassan Kamal Al-Deen



surgical interventions


individual mental health consultations consultations


births assisted

In 2019, MSF continued providing essential healthcare in Iraq, where people are suffering from the effects of years of conflict and ongoing instability.

Although displaced people continued returning to their homes in 2019, more than a million still face significant barriers that prevent them from doing so. Some have been living in camps for years, with little access to basic services. At the end of the year, the violent crackdown on protests across the country put additional pressure on the health system.

Many healthcare facilities have been destroyed and there is a shortage of medical specialists and services. Mental health needs have increased, generated by prolonged suffering among both internally displaced people and the rest of the Iraqi population.

MSF maintained our range of basic and secondary health services in 2019, including maternity and neonatal care, emergency rehabilitation, treatment for non-communicable diseases, surgery and post-operative care, and mental health support for displaced people, returnees and vulnerable communities.

Mental healthcare was a main component of all MSF services in Ninewa governorate, where the war against the Islamic State has resulted in severe physical and mental trauma among its inhabitants.

In West Mosul, we ran a comprehensive maternity unit in Nablus hospital with surgical capacity for Cesarean sections. As displaced families returned to the area, we also set up maternity services in Al-Rafedein basic healthcare centre.

In Diyala, MSF teams addressed the needs of displaced people, returnees and host communities by offering basic healthcare, mental health support, sexual and reproductive healthcare, treatment for non-communicable diseases and health promotion.

From October, when the demonstrations started, our teams provided medical supplies and technical support to various hospitals across the country. This included mass casualty triage training at the Ali hospital for the doctors and nurses working in the emergency department.