Ministry of Health.. Achievements & challenges during nine years of resilience

Yemen News Agency SABA
Ministry of Health.. Achievements & challenges during nine years of resilience
[08/ April/2024]

SANA'A Apr 08. 2024 (Saba) - During nine years, the Ministry of Public Health and Population was able to withstand the challenges imposed by the US-Saudi-UAE aggression coalition on the health sector, which caused the largest humanitarian health disaster.

The Ministry has set its priorities in accordance with the directives of the Leader of the Revolution, Sayyed. Abdul Malik Badr Al-Din Al-Houthi, and supporting the Supreme Political Council and working according to scientific evidence directed and measured by indicators and achievements that describe the will for positive change under the slogan (A hand that heals those who protect and build).

Achievements of the Ministry of Health:

During nine years of aggression and blockade, the Ministry of Public Health and Population faced many challenges that required an exceptional response, which necessitated reading the current situation and working to serve citizens by securing and making basic interventions available and enabling beneficiaries to obtain them, within the approved quality standards.

The support of the leadership of the Supreme Political Council has played and continues to play a major role in achieving a number of achievements despite the challenges imposed by the aggression and blockade.

Under the slogan "A hand that heals those who protect and build", the health sector reform process included structural development and institutionalization of work through reviewing, updating and issuing laws, policies, strategies, regulations and manuals, building the capacity of workers, automating the health system, providing medicines and medical supplies, enhancing the performance of sub-units, including the Medicines Authority, the Medical Council, the Health Insurance Authority and the Medical Committee, and providing standard services at various levels of the health system, including the provision of medicines, equipment, supplies and structural interventions that enhance the structure. Infrastructure, to meet the needs of patients despite the continued aggression and blockade.

In order to embody the values of charity and mercy in the provision of medical services, the Ministry of Health was keen to implement the directives of the Leader of the Revolution, Mr. Abdul Malik Al-Houthi and Chairman of the Supreme Political Council, to provide medical services to the poor and needy free of charge, and to prepare free medical services programs for poor and needy families for the second phase to complete the equipping of heart and kidney centers in the Al-Thawra Hospital Authority, Oncology and Liver in the Republican Hospital Authority and Al-Sabaeen Hospital, and the establishment of a pediatric medicine and surgery center at Kuwait University Hospital, which will join the free medical services program Phase II With government support and with the participation of the General Authority of Zakat.

Construction interventions and rehabilitation activities:

According to a report issued by the ministry, a copy of which was obtained by the Yemeni News Agency (Saba), the interventions during the period from 2020 to 2023 were the process of rehabilitating, building and expanding 377 health facilities, implementing 497 projects to provide solar energy for health facilities, and providing support with medical equipment and equipment, where 41,871 medical devices of 258 types were provided, including two magnetic resonance devices for each of the revolution in Hodeidah and Al-Jumhouri in the municipality, and 14 CT scan machines.

A linear accelerator for radiotherapy was also provided to the oncology center at a cost of five million dollars, and six oncology units were opened in the governorates with equipping, rehabilitation and operational expenses, and medicines for tumors were provided with a total of 15 billion riyals, and more than one and a half million dialysis sessions worth 30 million dollars during the past five years to cover the needs of dialysis centers.

Incentives were provided to 25,343 health workers in two thousand and 504 health facilities, support with medicines and medical supplies, construction of units for the treatment and disposal of medical waste and environmental sanitation, training of five thousand and 300 trainees in the field of medical waste management, and construction, rehabilitation and restoration of warehouses.

The report pointed out that the standard definition of reference hospital bodies has been completed within the framework of the application of the policy (3/6/12), which means that any body must include three qualitative specialized centers, six medical units and 12 specialized departments, and this trend includes increasing capacity in vital service facilities in them to meet the needs of society and in order to achieve their reference, and the rehabilitation and equipping of specialized centers in the bodies to provide medical, therapeutic and diagnostic services, to reduce the need to travel in search of those services.

Yemeni Board for Medical and Health Specializations :
The report stated that the number of courses in the Council reached 61 courses in the Arab and Yemeni fellowship, specializations and diploma, and branches of the Yemeni Council were opened in all governorates of the Republic, and the number of training centers reached 12 centers in which doctors of all courses are trained.

The report indicated that the number of trainees during the year 2022-2023 AD is three thousand and 361 trainees, including one thousand and 602 trainees in the Arab fellowship courses for the year 2022-2023 AD and in the Yemeni fellowship courses one thousand and 55 trainees for the year 2022-2023, and 704 trainees in the professional master's for the same period, and the number of students in the Arab Fellowship Certificate programs (Arab Board) for the years 2018-2021 AD, reached one thousand and 578 students, including 307 graduates.

The number of students in the Yemeni Fellowship Certificate Programs (Yemeni Board) reached one thousand and 393 students, including 283 graduates, and the number of students in the Yemeni specialization certificate programs (Yemeni Master's) for the period from 2018 to 2021 reached one thousand and 257 students, including 358 graduates, while the number of students and graduates in diploma programs for the period from 2018 to 2021 reached 175.

Supreme Authority for Medicines:
The Medicines Authority has prepared its regulation and the Pharmacy and Drug Law, and the total number of regulations that have been completed is 10 regulations, issuing the drug policy for the next ten years, and updating the list of essential medicines.

The report pointed out that companies have been organized and registered in a way that enhances the provision of medicines to the citizen and breaks the monopoly, limiting 66 items to the local industry, issuing a decision to localize a thousand items during the next five years, stimulating the local industry and constructing three new factories within the plan to reach 12 factories, and receiving 20 applications for the establishment of new pharmaceutical factories, as well as receiving an application for the first time to establish a medical supplies factory.

He stated that 38 drug production lines have been made during the current year and will reach 48, and the number of locally manufactured varieties is one thousand and 818 items, and the number of new laboratories is 15, and 500 million riyals have been disbursed to Yadco Company for the manufacture of intravenous solutions, and a comprehensive survey of areas that have not been previously surveyed to explore and inventory medicinal herbs in Yemen.

The report indicated that a comprehensive guide to medicinal plants in Yemen was prepared, 15 natural plants were identified for cultivation and propagation, 40 HPLC screening devices and the rest of the priority devices for drug testing were purchased, two GC and JC MAS devices were provided (modern for the first time in Yemen) worth $ 814,000, the old laboratory was restored, the rehabilitation of the new pharmaceutical laboratory was started with a value of two billion and 800 million riyals, the completion of automation in the authority and outlets, the pricing of three thousand and 700 items traded in an application, and follow-up installation Pricing and going down to control companies and items.

The authority also established the national pharmacy buildings for five pharmacies in the capital's secretariat with a total amount of 286 billion, 364 million and 800 riyals, and work is continuing to complete the rest of the governorates, providing medicines for patients with chronic diseases, quality medicines such as albumin and growth hormone, and providing three million insulin vitamins worth $ 22 million.

Medicines for blood diseases, genetic diseases and hemophilia worth $ 15 million, medicines for immunological diseases, kidney and organ transplanters, multiple sclerosis, serum diphtheria and essential medicines, as well as medicines for centers and units were provided to more than two thousand facilities with a total of more than 25 billion riyals.

Takaful Services:
Takaful camps were implemented in the most needy and poor areas for more than 300 therapeutic and surgical medical camps, benefiting more than 80,000 beneficiaries in 12 governorates.

Primary Health Care Achievements:
The report stated that Al-Amal Hospital for Psychiatric and Mental Diseases, the first and second phases, the provision of an EEG device in the hospital and another in the Al-Thawra General Hospital Authority, providing the hospital with a solar energy system, rehabilitating 10 mental health clinics in hospitals for 8 governorates, and qualifying ten psychologists in coordination with the Yemeni Board for Medical Specializations.

He pointed out that five million and 500 thousand mosquito nets impregnated with long-term pesticide were distributed during the period from 2018 to 2023, mist spraying campaigns were carried out for more than 700,000 homes, various malaria medicines were provided to about one million and 500 thousand patients, and ten units for malaria control, entomological surveillance and emergency response were operated in endemic areas.

According to the report, campaigns were carried out to remove the sources of mosquito breeding and larval spraying in 26 Tihamiya districts, updating the epidemiological map of malaria, distributing more than five million and 500 thousand rapid examination tapes for malaria and dengue, implementing three national campaigns to get rid of schistosomiasis and intestinal worms, three national campaigns to get rid of black disease, two national campaigns to get rid of trachoma, providing leishmania medicines to 14 governorates, and providing serum medicines and rabies vaccine to 14 governorates.

He pointed out that 142 mobile clinics have been operated to provide curative and preventive services in hard-to-reach rural areas in all governorates, providing financial incentives for health workers in centers for the treatment of acute and severe malnutrition, opening new centers for the treatment of acute and severe malnutrition, with the doubling of TFC, and the establishment of laboratories and care for the first time in acute and severe malnutrition centers with TFC complications.

Long-term training was carried out for two years field epidemiology for two batches from 2018 to 2023, the construction of 27 cholera treatment centers and their full equipment during the period from 2020 to 2021, the provision of incentives for two thousand and 700 health staff in those centers, and the provision of a thousand spray machines.

More than six thousand and 300 doctors and health workers were trained on national policies for the treatment of malaria and dengue cases in the governorates, 391 mobile phones were provided to surveillance officers in the new facilities used in the AIDS system to report cases, and more than 12 studies were carried out to assess vector resistance to various pesticides used in control.

Campaigns were carried out to spray homes with the pesticide with a total of 783,000 homes, medium-term training, a field epidemiology year (diploma) for 24 people, and short-term, 3 months of schooling, for 11 empowerment courses.

Population Sector Maternal and Newborn Health:
The report stated that 12 trainees from the nursing staff in neonatal care specialties, and 20 trainees from anesthesia technicians in obstetric emergency operations, were trained for a period of 3 months.

The one-year diploma courses were also implemented at the Yemeni Board of Medical Specializations in emergency obstetric courses for doctors, newborns for doctors, anesthesia technician for anesthesia technicians, neonatal technician for physician and nursing assistants, operations technicians, and the rehabilitation of 844 midwives from remote areas and facilities that do not have midwives from different governorates within the midwife program for each village with the aim of bridging the gap.

The voucher system for health facilities was expanded and continued to be supported to provide a package of maternal and newborn health services as health insurance in the governorates, and work on the electronic information logistics supply system was launched during the year 2019 at the central, governorate and district levels, and follow-up investigation about natural and caesarean delivery through data through the information system in the public sector and data collection from the private sector.

The report pointed out that the Maternal Mortality Surveillance and Response Program has been established and a national cadre has been trained in Jordan to work in it, which aims to monitor all deaths that occurred in health facilities or in the community for the purpose of analyzing the causes of death, obtaining accurate and correct information, finding solutions that led to death, reducing the rate and working to improve services, and preparing the national guide for the establishment and rehabilitation of maternity and child hospitals at the governorate level, the maternity and childhood hospital with a capacity of 100 beds and a capacity of 200 beds, as well as the reference hospital has a capacity of 400 beds.

A nursing procedures manual for the care of premature and newborns in nursery departments was also prepared, and investigation and investigation of fetal abnormalities was carried out, and 358,583 pregnant women were born at home under medical supervision, and 984,393 pregnant women were born under medical supervision in facilities.

Physiotherapy and Prosthetics Center:
The report stated that the number of disabled people provided with the service reached 147,769 disabled, including 35,308 children, noting that the cases of disabilities rose to 400% after the aggression.

Health System Automation:
During the last period, the Ministry of Health worked to find solutions to the existing problems and set key objectives for building and adopting high systems that included automated systems and unified information interconnected in all sectors of the ministry, linking health data to each other, providing common and secure databases that save health indicators and information electronically, as well as accessing and analyzing data easily.

Utilization was made of proven information systems in other countries, such as systems built using the DHS2 platform and the Health Resources Availability and Services Assessment System (HeRAMS), training and qualifying staff who will deal with data, information and systems, and raising the level of evaluation by comparing performance electronically between health institutions with similar natural conditions.

The comprehensive system for automating hospitals and various health facilities was introduced, as it contains the medical system, the warehouse system, and the financial system, in the period from 2018 to 2023, automated systems were downloaded, updated, and staff were trained on them for 60% of hospitals, i.e. 80 hospitals.

The National System for Statistical Health Information has also been implemented in all governorates and directorates of the Republic and training is under way on its use at the level of health facilities, where one thousand and 450 have been trained in the use of this system.

The website of the Ministry of Public Health and Population has been updated to include information about it, its organizational structure, tasks, competencies, regulations and laws, the ministry's news, the official spokesperson, general news, public health topics, statistics and indicators of health resources and services, and the site was activated in mid-2023.

The report pointed out that the information systems of managing logistics services, treatment grants, monitoring the availability of health resources and services (Hermes), electronic correspondence (incoming and outgoing and electronic archiving), public service, the application of health services pricing, and the General Administration of Technical and International Cooperation have been established to follow up on agreements, projects and interventions in the health sector.

Manuals, standards and evaluation departments:
The report confirmed that the ministry has completed more than 60 national guides for standard standards, including 30 guides for hospitals and specialized centers such as artificial kidneys, dialysis, prosthetics, burn treatment, private and pharmaceutical medical facilities, emergency services, ambulance, oral and dental health, medical waste, clinical pharmacy, psychiatric care and others.

In the fourth cycle, the evaluation process included 190 hospitals, 80 dispensaries, 50 diagnostic centers and 600 medical centers, and the implementation of national accreditation programs for hospitals (Ahsan).

Investment in the health sector:
The Ministry has prepared the investment map, and 20 cards for more than 290 investment opportunities in various governorates, including public and specialized hospitals in the establishment of psychiatric hospitals, and specialized centers, including ten specialized centers for quality services (kidney transplantation, liver transplantation, bone marrow transplantation, corneal transplantation, joint transplant), and the implementation of the first and second investment meeting.

Launch of the Global Health Forum for Gaza Advocacy:
The leadership of the Ministry of Health announced the initiative to hold the World Health Forum to advocate for Gaza, in addition to holding medical conferences all aimed at supporting Gaza, and emphasizing the readiness of the health sector in Yemen to provide hundreds of specialized medical cadres and surgeons to support the health sector in the Gaza Strip and to equip medical convoys and conduct them to the Gaza Strip if allowed.

A website has also been launched for the forum, which is fed by the official spokesman of the Yemeni Ministry of Health by publishing Palestinian health data and statements of incrimination and condemnation issued by the Yemeni Ministry of Health (which number 11 so far), monitoring and publishing Zionist crimes committed against medical and ambulance personnel in Gaza, feeding social networking sites with the latest developments in the health aspect in Gaza, in addition to the Ministry's official spokesperson's meetings with local and Arab satellite channels and radio stations regarding developments in the health situation in the Gaza Strip.

Victims of aggression:
Statistics indicate that the number of martyrs and wounded since the beginning of the aggression until March 25, 2024, who arrived at hospitals, reached 49 thousand and 408 civilians, including 15 thousand and 752 martyrs and 33 thousand and 656 wounded, and the number of martyrs of children reached three thousand and 184 martyrs and the wounded four thousand and 714, while the number of martyrs of women reached three thousand and 223 women, and the wounded three thousand and 306 women.

A total of 14,406 civilian disabilities were targeted, including more than 6,000 children.

Targeting health facilities, centers and medical staff:
According to statistics, hospitals and medical facilities, which are considered civilian objects with special protection under the laws of war, have been targeted and targeted as a war crime punishable by prosecution.

Where 539 health and administrative facilities were targeted in 14 governorates, of which 162 health facilities were completely destroyed and 376 were partially destroyed, which led to great pressure on the health sector, and more than 55% of health facilities were out of work, and under the blockade, 45% of the facilities are operating at a minimum.

The report stated that the total victims of health personnel reached 69 medical and nursing staff, including 66 martyrs, and the aggression caused the departure of nearly 95% of the medical staff working in the country, the destruction of a drug factory and two oxygen factories directly, and the targeting of 100 ambulances with shelling while carrying out their medical tasks.

The impact of the aggression on the humanitarian situation in Yemen:
According to indicators, medical centers have recorded the death of more than 830,000 children under the age of five during nine years of aggression, 80 newborns under the age of 28 days die daily, and 46,000 women die as a result of complications resulting from the blockade and aggression.

350,000 abortions were also recorded, and a significant increase in fetal malformations, reaching more than 22,000 cases of malformation in the areas intensively targeted by the aggression with internationally prohibited weapons, and the increase in cases of premature and underweight births annually under the aggression and siege, by more than 9%, 50% of whom die due to the repercussions of the blockade, aggression, malnutrition and immunity.

While the number of people with cardiac malformations reached more than three thousand children, the number of children suffering from acute malnutrition rose to more than two million and 600 thousand children under the age of five, including 630 thousand children suffering from severe acute malnutrition, more than one million and 800 thousand women suffering from malnutrition, one million women suffering from anemia, and 36% of pregnant mothers attending health facilities have anemia.

According to the indicators, the cases of pneumonia for children amounted to 18%, and 18% of women suffer from malnutrition, and seven thousand and 387 cases of thalassemia and hereditary blood breakage face the risk of death to prevent the entry of medicines and the low economic level of their families, of whom 541 died due to the blockade, while there are five thousand kidney failure patients facing a shortage in the drug stock for dialysis sessions as a result of the blockade, in addition to the accompanying medicines for each session, and there are more than 498 hemodialysis devices in Several centers need spare parts.

Statistics show that there are more than two thousand cases of corneal malformations and ulcers that require corneal transplantation abroad, and the entry of medical supplies necessary to save the lives of millions of patients with chronic diseases has been prevented, such as: 50% of cancer drugs, 38 classes of major drugs for blood products that need special transport conditions such as refrigeration, 68 types of surgical drugs, 31 types of resuscitation and anesthesia drugs, 120 types of medicines for chronic diseases, 65 types of laboratory solutions and tissue tests.

It explained that there are more than 95,850 cases registered with the National Center for Oncology, an increase of 50%, and more than three thousand children with leukemia face death, and 300 of them need to travel urgently for treatment, 30% of them need bone marrow transplantation, and nine thousand cases are added annually to cancer patients, 15% of which are children, and preventing the entry of medicines led to a large deficit of 50% of supportive drugs.

The effect of aggression on the pharmacological situation:
The impact of the aggression on the pharmaceutical sector through the absence and lack of most of the medicines that need special transport conditions (refrigeration), where the varieties exceeded 38 scientific names that include hundreds of trade names that were circulating before the aggression in large numbers, and therefore there are thousands of patients who lost their medicines due to the blockade, including kidney transplant medicines, blood products, hormonal drugs and some diagnostic solutions.

Statistics show that 1630 varieties of 98 medicines are of little availability due to aggression and blockade and are not manufactured locally according to the scientific name, 16 companies that were producing 559 types of medicines closed their market in Yemen due to the blockade, and 83 importers who were providing one thousand and 329 items stopped importing due to the inappropriate situation imposed by the aggression and blockade.

It confirmed the increase in the average annual need for dozens of pharmaceutical items from 200 to 500 percent, and preventing the entry of radioactive iodine to thyroid cancer patients as a result of the blockade.

Women and children are the most affected by the aggression and blockade, especially those who suffer from certain diseases such as malnutrition and anemia, instead of the health status of the mother, fetus or newborn from the age group 0 days to 28 days or less than 5 years.

Statistics confirm that 24.1 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance, including 18.2 million women and children, and 3.5 million Yemeni children are malnourished, of whom 500,000 are severely malnourished.

There are 52,000 child deaths annually, at a rate of one child every ten minutes, and an average of 60 children per thousand births, according to the statement of the representative of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and the number of daily cases of malnutrition reached 80-90 cases, including 40 acute and severe cases, and there are 25 cases recorded daily in Sana'a.

Epidemics and diseases:
The aggression worked from the beginning to target the health system related to water, sanitation and preventive services, which led to the spread of many diseases and epidemics during the nine years of aggression.

The number of suspected cases of epidemic diseases during the period from 2016 to March 2024 reached 22 million and 788 thousand and 333 cases, including 11 thousand and 188 deaths.

Suffering of patients who need to travel abroad:
Many patients who need to travel abroad still suffer from a series of complications from bad to worse, as the number of registered patients has reached 100,000 and the number is increasing, and only 500 patients currently travel per month, due to the limited number of seats for patients and leaving them subject to the ticket market policy to travel to Jordan.

The blockade on Yemen was reflected on patients who need to travel abroad as a legal and humanitarian right, and the coalition's claim that flights were expanded in the last year was only from an orphan trip per week to only 5 flights per week, through the only carrier (Yemenia) and to a single destination, Jordan.

Statistics confirm that five weekly flights to Jordan do not cover 10% of the real need for patients to travel to Jordan only, while the number of patients is increasing every day, as there are hundreds of applications to register in the lists of the Supreme Medical Committee who need to travel to any treatment destination outside the country in an emergency manner.

The statistics for the year 2023 for those for whom a medical report was issued to travel abroad amounted to nine thousand and 665 cases that are difficult to treat inside the country.

The Ministry of Public Health and Population blamed the countries of aggression for the repercussions of the health disaster as a result of their aggression and systematic destruction of the health sector and the crimes they committed that are still ongoing until now.

It called for the opening of Sana'a International Airport to all humanitarian and commercial flights on an ongoing basis and for multiple destinations and multiple carriers to alleviate the suffering of patients for treatment at any destination without arbitrary measures, and for the safe entry of medicines.

It stressed that the repudiation of the countries of aggression from the implementation of the truce in its humanitarian aspect regarding Sana'a International Airport is a war crime added to its heinous crimes against humanity and life.

The ministry called for the opening of all Yemeni ports and the lifting of the naval blockade for the arrival of medical supplies and medicines. Demand that the UN allow medical missions to enter Yemen.

It also demanded that humanitarian, medical and food aid be allowed to enter without conditions or detention. She called on doctors who are outside the country to return to serve their country, indicating that the health sector needs nearly 40,000 doctors to cover the deficit, especially in rural areas and medical centers, and more than ten thousand specialists.

The Ministry also called on media professionals and Arab and international media to expose the enormity of the crime committed by the countries of aggression against Yemen, the unjust and continuous blockade, their use of all types of internationally prohibited weapons, premeditated murder and their commission of all crimes against humanity.

Civil work associations, human rights organizations, relevant institutions and human rights called for initiating lawsuits against the countries of aggression and those who facilitated this war of aggression logistically and armamentally from American, European and British companies, and to prosecute them as war criminals, and to prosecute all companies that supplied these criminal systems with prohibited weapons.


resource : Saba