Unrest has led thousands of Burundians to flee into neighbouring Tanzania
The landlocked East African country of Burundi is one of the world’s poorest nations.
Since independence from Belgium in 1962, Burundi’s 10.5 million people have been plagued by civil war. Tensions still exist between the usually-dominant Tutsi minority and the Hutu majority.
Due to current unrest in the country, thousands of Burundians have fled across the border to Tanzania. Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) is helping tens of thousands of these refugees in the Nyarugusu and Nduta camps.
MSF first worked in Burundi in 1992. Our work in the country has focused on providing responses to endemic and epidemic diseases, social violence and healthcare exclusion.
MSF’s work in Burundi: 2016
In 2016, we continued to provide high-quality care, free of charge, to survivors of trauma in Burundi’s capital, Bujumbura.
L’Arche Kigobe, a private facility, is one of two hospitals providing care for survivors of trauma in Bujumbura, where rife political tensions and economic difficulties heavily impacted local people. We started activities in the clinic in 2015 during the riots that occurred around the time of the presidential elections.
In 2016, we increased L’Arche’s capacity from 43 to 75 beds, and expanded care to treat all survivors of trauma.
In 2016, teams treated 4,839 patients in the emergency department, admitted 1,801 to hospital and performed some 3,184 surgical interventions. Specialised physiotherapists provided 11,237 sessions for patients recovering from surgery.
In addition, 1,160 patients received psychological support.
We responded to two cholera alerts during the peak season (between August and November). In PRC hospital in Bujumbura, a team set up a cholera treatment centre and supported the management of 57 patients.
We also set up two centres in Kabezi and Ruziba and treated a total of 295 patients. To prevent the spread of the disease, teams disinfected 2,832 households and provided equipment so families could treat their drinking water.
Find out more in our International Activity Report