The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has completed the first 12 of 100 community clinics under construction in Cox’s Bazar, as part of a joint effort with the Government of Bangladesh and the World Bank to expand access to health care.
“Since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Government of Bangladesh has boosted national health care programs and launched comprehensive countrywide Covid-19 vaccination operations, which IOM supported in Cox’s Bazar and other parts of the country,” said Health and Family Welfare Zahid Maleque on Sunday, reports UNB.
“We are now working together to ensure the healthcare system reaches the doorstep of every person. The inauguration of the newly constructed community clinics in Cox’s Bazar is one of many government interventions to achieve this goal.”
Access to basic infrastructure and services in the southernmost part of the country, where Bangladesh hosts around 1.1 million Rohingya refugees, were already much lower compared to the national average. Many of the existing health facilities were built two decades ago and have since suffered infrastructural damage caused by flooding and other natural hazards.
IOM demolished the old clinics and constructed larger, environmentally sustainable buildings that include solar-powered systems, safe water supply and improved sanitation facilities.
“The multidimensional needs of refugee and host communities requires strong partnerships between key humanitarian and development actors to simultaneously tackle immediate and long-term challenges,” said Abdusattor Esoev, IOM Chief of Mission in Bangladesh.