Health programs in Iraq are facing drastic cuts in the face of severe funding shortages, the World Health Organization [WHO] said, leaving people exposed to diseases amid searing summer temperatures.
Almost 3 million people will have no access to urgently needed services because 84 percent of the country’s donor-funded health programs were shut down last month, WHO said August 4.
The news comes as Iraq faces a debilitating heatwave, with temperatures topping 50 degrees Centigrade at a time when almost one million Iraqi children are living in refugee camps.
Cecil Laguardia of World Vision, a charity, noted said many people are suffering from dehydration, diarrhea and heatstrokes.
A United Nations appeal for funds received only 8 percent of the $60.9 million required to keep facilities open.
The loss of 184 health service providers, shut down in 10 of Iraq’s 19 governorates, will leave refugees, internally displaced people, and host communities without any access to critical care, WHO said.
The projects shut down included those in areas of heavy fighting, such as the area around Dohuk governorate in the north of the country, and near Ramadi in Anbar province.
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