A healthy diet is the buttress of human survival, and for infants, it is as essential as oxygen. The nutrition which is indispensable to a child’s healthy and productive growth, if choked off, would be devastating for their all-round development and would indirectly affect the nation’s demographic dividend.
A Different Kind Of War In Afghanistan: Malnutrition And Measles
This is precisely the condition drawing a picture of Afghanistan, where kids are ailing from poor nutritional inputs in their infant stages.
The under-nutrition among the children has brought Afghanistan to the brink of a silent emergency. Again the takeover of the Taliban has pushed the netizens deeper into the ocean of gloom, shaking the bedrock of the health infrastructure of the country.
Ghor is battling a severe health crisis.
In Afghanistan, the condition of a remote central province, Ghor, is unbearable to seek. The crippling economy has made it harder for the hospitals there to provide life support and basic health requirements to their patients. The mothers crowd the hospitals with their babies only to get ousted out by the hospital workers due to the lack of infrastructure and basic facilities in the hospital.
Lack of access to food, medicines for children has propelled many cries of mothers and has eventually shaken even the spine of doctors. The doctors in the malnutrition triage center reveal that they have been witnessing a rise in cases as compared to last year, almost doubled. The rate of wasting among children, wasting away to skin and bones, has been plunging. The women are malnourished, creating a harmful cycle of growth, causing the stunted growth of children only to become stunted mothers in the future. The UN report unveils the risk of death due to starvation to one million children in the coming month.
The delayed salaries of staff in the hospital make them reluctant and alienated from their own service; still, they manage to hold their collection on behalf of the patients. Dr. Parsa, who was the head of the hospital, had been spending from his own pocket to pay for six extra nurses. The intolerable cost of treatment has put the families in the web of debt. Dr. Parsa has repeatedly been urging international agencies to extend a hand of support to his hospital, which is the only health care service provided in Ghor.
The crippled economy of Afghanistan
The Taliban-led government in Afghanistan has brought them into a new pothole where the people are struggling with rising job losses, lack of cash and soaring prices, the plummeting value of the country’s currency, and formed a new class of hungry.
The International support has been withdrawn, and the foreign reserves available have been frozen, accounting for a total of ten billion dollars by the US, adding woes to an already existing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.
Winter adds to the agony
The lack of enough wood in the heater keeps adding to their torment at a temperature drop of minus ten degrees at night. The badly under-resourced hospitals are now suffering even more with the cutting off of funds. As the winter looms across the world, people here are enduring the wrath of a crumbled economy. Their survival is now based on the funds from international charities.
A place near the capital city Kabul, Chaghcharan has witnessed the decreased amount of snow in the mountains there threatening the prevalence of drought over the area deepening the toil of existential crisis the local folks are facing.
Covid-19 took toll on vaccination
The armed clashes along with Covid-19 did nothing except aggravate the turmoil of people suffering from various infectious diseases, as was clearly visible in the measles ward. The vaccination drive was successfully disrupted by the pandemic. The empty cylinders outside the measles ward were left futile due to the lack of power to run it.
Hopefully, the International Red Cross Committee has assured emergency support for the next 6 months, but concerns loom over the further availability of services which might lead to the death of millions.