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LIFE Promotes Integrative Healthcare for Rohingya Refugees with the Launch of Vital Eye Care Clinic in Bangladesh

The Rohingya are a Muslim ethnic group that has fled persecution in Myanmar. The exit of the country has fueled a historic migration crisis. Leaving their homes, livelihoods, friends, and family, hundreds of thousands have sought safety, many settling in the neighboring country of Bangladesh. 

 

Several camps have been set up, the Kutupalong camp is the largest. Most of these camps are overcrowded, with unsanitary practices and not enough food, water, and other essentials to go around. In such environments, medical care is essential, though scarce. 


The Urgent Need for Medical Support

 

The Rohingya have been subjected to a severe lack of essential services and medical care is one of them. Many treatable and preventable conditions are being endured or worse becoming a severe chronic condition because of lack of medical attention.  

 

Malnutrition, respiratory infections, and waterborne diseases are common because of the overcrowded and unsanitary conditions. Many are suffering from mental health conditions after experiencing persecution, displacement, and trauma. These illnesses have lifelong repercussions if proper medical attention and treatments are not given.  

 

Pregnant women and young children are particularly vulnerable. The absence of proper prenatal and postnatal care can lead to high maternal and infant mortality rates. 


LIFE’s Response  

 

Life for Relief and Development believes healthcare accessibility is not a privilege but a human right. Seeing the inequity and the desperate need in the Rohingya camps, LIFE established a healthcare center in Camp-1/ West, Kutupalong Rohingya Camp, Ukhiya, Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh. 

 

The center opened in September 2020, designated as UHD 411 by the World Health Organization (WHO), and has played a significant role in seeing more positive health outcomes in the camp.  

 

The center promotes general and maternal health among the refugees, offering regular and emergency health services. Over the years, it has become a go-to place for all the Rohingyas healthcare needs, serving 30,000 Rohingyas annually. 


The Creation of the LIFE Vision Corner  

 

The LIFE “Vision Corner” was established recently in October 2023 within the existing healthcare facilities. This initiative is an expansion of the already existing services to include eye care. Eye care had yet to be a consistent service offered to Rohingya, so the new addition was much needed.  

 

Eye care is often overlooked in emergency healthcare provisions, yet it is critical for maintaining the quality of life. Many Rohingyas suffer from untreated eye conditions that can lead to blindness or significant visual impairment if not addressed.  

 

The Vision Corner offers eye checkups, medications, drops, and ointments, all prescribed by experienced doctors at no cost to the patients. This service addresses immediate eye health needs and contributes to the overall well-being of the individuals served.  


A Model for Integrated Healthcare 

 

The Vision Corner has generated a more integrative approach to healthcare within refugee settings. Integrative healthcare is something that is on the rise all over the world. Integrated healthcare has a profound effect on patients as they can have a more comprehensive and holistic understanding of the state of their health, while healthcare practitioners can work together to provide higher standards of care with more effective results.  


Continuing to Support Refugees Worldwide 

 

The ongoing support for the Rohingya refugees from LIFE’s donors has opened doors to creating targeted and collaborative interventions that have vastly improved the lives of the Rohingya. This is one of the many projects that LIFE provides to refugees worldwide. LIFE also offers programs to Syrian, Afghan, Iraqi, and Palestinian refugees.  

 

According to the UNHCR, there are currently 35.3 million refugees and 62.5 million internally displaced people in the world. As the global refugee crisis continues, such initiatives like LIFE’s Refugee Programs are vital, offering not just medical care but also hope and dignity to some of the most vulnerable populations.  

 

Media Coverage  


For news coverage on this project, take look at our recent press release that has been published by hundreds of news outlets worldwide. Click here to view the press release. 


Get Involved  

 

Support those that have lost so much by giving to LIFE’s Refugee Program. Your gift will provide families and individuals in need with food, water, shelter, and healthcare. You can choose which community you would like to give to. With every donation, refugees are given a chance at a new life with the possibility to live fully and thrive once more.  



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