Since the first week of fighting in the Sudan, over 500 people have died, thousands have been injured, and tens of thousands are fleeing the country to neighbouring countries. These figures are likely to be underestimated and the final toll is expected to rise due to disease outbreaks, impacts on the health and care system, and lack of essential services amidst fighting.
The Faculty of Public Health and its Special Interest Groups for the Sudan, Africa and Global Violence Prevention condemn the fighting, particularly the systematic attacks on health facilities and the weaponization of health. We stand with our colleagues in the country and will continue to work with our international partners to support the immediate and long-term Public Health response.
The Sudanese people already face an unstable humanitarian situation, with the World Health Organisation estimating that 1 in 3 of the population of Sudan were in need of humanitarian assistance in 2023.
The immediate impact of the crisis has been substantial, and the long-term impact is likely to be equally significant, particularly for refugees and the most vulnerable populations in the region. The mental health impact on individuals and children from the distress, displacement, bereavement, and trauma will remain both in the immediate and long-term. Continued loss of homes, livelihoods and infrastructure could turn this country from being the potential food basket for Africa into desolation, with a risk of the conflict spreading to other parts of the horn of Africa.
Considering the extent of the impact of the fighting, it is imperative that the ceasefire is sustained, to allow safe passage for patients to receive care, dignity and burial for deceased, and so that basic needs are restored to avoid further loss of life.
The UK Faculty of Public Health is partnering with the Sudan Doctors Union UK to raise funds for the healthcare and humanitarian needs in the Sudan. To show your support, please donate here.