Why are we here?
Doctors Without Borders (MSF) stopped working in Laos in December 2013.
In 2011, MSF decided to launch a programme to provide obstetric and neonatal support and paediatric care for children under five, in five district hospitals and 10 health posts in Huaphan province, northeastern Laos. The aim was to reduce infant mortality, as well as the number of deaths during pregnancy and childbirth, and an MSF team worked with the hospitals and health centres of XiengKhor, Sop Bao, Ett, Xamtai and Kuan districts. Mobile medical clinics reached some of the most remote and disadvantaged communities in the province, and MSF worked to improve laboratory and pharmacy facilities in the area, as well as water, electricity and sanitation infrastructure.
The team found that low patient attendance rates, the scattered nature of the health facilities in the province, and the difficulties in recruiting qualified Lao staff and importing the necessary drugs meant that goals were not met and expected outcomes for training medical staff and treating patients were not reached. The decision was made not to continue the programme beyond the end of the year.
MSF first worked in the country in: 1989