By Seun Adeuyi
Over 40 per cent of the health facilities in Borno State have been damaged and not functional, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has estimated.
This was contained in an article the organisation published on ‘How community engagement prevents and protects health care from attacks in north-east Nigeria’ on Wednesday.
The article published on the organisation’s website said every attack has a dramatic impact on communities.
It quoted Dr Kazadi Mulombo, WHO representative to Nigeria, to have also said that over 50, 000 are facing the risk of losing access to all essential services.
“In Borno State, more than 40 per cent of health facilities are non-functioning or too damaged to provide health services to the population, so when a health facility is damaged or burnt down up to 50 000 people are at risk of losing access to all essential services.
“Communities living in remote areas where no health facilities are functional may also lose access to mobile health teams, forced to interrupt services due to security concerns. These attacks not only compromise the health of thousands but also cause significant losses of government, humanitarian agencies and donors’ resources,” Mulombo was quoted to have said.
The WHO noted that communities are key actors in the prevention of attacks and the protection of health care.
It added, “As a result, communities in Borno state are playing a critical role in protecting the health services that operate for their benefit. Community members have been seen acting as sentinels in front of health facilities, alerting health workers of pending attacks, and even creating human shields in front of health facilities.”