What we do

Médecins Sans Frontières brings medical humanitarian assistance to victims of conflict, natural disasters, epidemics or healthcare exclusion.

We treat patients suffering from a wide array of illnesses and health needs. Here you will find some of the main needs we see and what we do about them.

Discover the main crises we work in, the consequences faced by affected people and challenges in delivering care.

 
Treating multi drug resistant TB and HIV/AIDS in Manipur, India
Crisis Settings

Access to medicines

Unaffordable, unavailable, not adapted - people around the world face these challenges in accessing lifesaving medicines.
 
MSF bio lab at MSF’s Aden hospital
Medical Activities

Antibiotic resistance

Antibiotic resistance is a serious and growing phenomenon in contemporary medicine and has emerged as one of the pre-eminent public health concerns of the 21st century.
 
East Aleppo
In Focus

Attacks on medical care

Attacks against medical facilities and health workers, whether deliberate or indiscriminate, are part of generalised violence and atrocities committed against civilians in armed conflict. They deprive populations of health services, often when they need them the most.
 
Migrants and Refugees in Mexico shelters
In Focus

Central American Migration

An estimated 500,000 people a year flee violence and poverty in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, heading north through Mexico to find safety. The levels of violence in the region are comparable to that of war zones MSF has worked in for decades.
 
MSF Measles Vaccination in DRC
Medical Activities

Child health

Around the world, Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) teams are working to protect the health of children.
 
Cholera intervention in South Kivu
Medical Activities

Cholera

Although easy to prevent and treat, cholera affects up to 4 million people worldwide per year, resulting in up to 140,000 deaths.
 
COVID-19 response in Intensive care unit of HUG
Medical Activities

Coronavirus

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses, most of which are harmless for humans. However, two types can cause severe lung infections. MSF is currently responding to a worldwide coronavirus pandemic, COVID-19
 
COVID-19 Project in Mons, Belgium
In Focus

Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic

Médecins Sans Frontières' (MSF) update on the coronavirus disease COVID-19 pandemic.
 
Zimbabwe - Chimamani
In Focus

Cyclone Idai & Southern Africa flooding

A weather system that produced heavy rains flooded parts of Malawi in early March 2019, before developing into Cyclone Idai which struck Mozambique and Zimbabwe on 14-16 March 2019, causing widespread flooding and damage.
 
Ebola Treatment Centre (ETC) in Bikoro
In Focus

DRC Ebola outbreaks

Since March 2018, DRC has experienced a succession of Ebola outbreaks. On 1 June 2020, DRC declared another outbreak – the third since 2018 – in northwestern Équateur province, making it the country's eleventh in just over 40 years.
 
516330807JM094_LIBERIA_RACE Extreme Medicine Exhibition Print
Medical Activities

Ebola and Marburg

Ebola and Marburg haemorrhagic fevers are rare but deadly. Outbreaks can kill 25 to 90 per cent of those infected, spreading fear and panic. No cure exists and treatment is mainly symptomatic.
 
MSF responds to typhoid outbreak in Harare.
Crisis Settings

Epidemics and pandemics

Millions of people still die each year from infectious diseases that are preventable or can be treated.
 
Gaza protest
In Focus

Great March of Return

Nearly every Friday between 30 March 2018 and December 2019, protestors in the ‘Great March of Return’ demonstrations in Gaza, Palestine were met with hails of bullets from the Israeli army.
 
Cambodia Hep-C
Medical Activities

Hepatitis C

Worldwide, an estimated 71 million people are infected with the hepatitis C virus, double the number living with HIV. While hepatitis C can be cured, few people have access to treatment.
 
Fighting Hepatitis E in Am Timan Hospital, Chad - January 2017
Medical Activities

Hepatitis E

Hepatitis E is transmitted by ingesting water contaminated by an infected person’s faeces. Outbreaks are often documented in places with poor sanitation, like camps for refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs). Hepatitis E commonly causes only a mild short-term illness.
 
Malawi - Advanced HIV
Medical Activities

HIV/AIDS

Nearly 700,000 people died from AIDS, while 1.7 million people became newly infected with the HIV virus in 2019.
 
Kala Azar in Bihar
Medical Activities

Kala azar

Two hundred million people are at risk of infection with kala azar - one of the world's most dangerous topical diseases. Only malaria is more deadly.
 
Kunduz Hospital After the Attack
In Focus

Kunduz hospital attack

On 3 October 2015, US airstrikes destroyed our trauma hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, killing 42 people. Our request for an independent investigation has so far gone unanswered.
 
Rann
In Focus

Lake Chad Crisis

Armed conflict has forced over 2.5 million people to flee their homes across the Lake Chad Basin. Violence and multiple forced displacement have destroyed what ability people had to support themselves, with many dependent on humanitarian assistance.
 
Magaria pediatric unit and ITFC
Medical Activities

Malaria

Each year, malaria kills nearly half a million people. 70 per cent of all deaths are children under five years of age.
 
Patiente Ngangu, MSF nurse
Medical Activities

Malnutrition

More than 224 million children around the world last year suffered from malnutrition. It is the underlying contributing factor in nearly half of the deaths of children under five years of age.
 
Largest measles outbreak: MSF intervenes in Kongo Central
Medical Activities

Measles

In 2019, our teams vaccinated over 1.3 million people against measles in response to outbreaks, and conducted over 2.2 million routine vaccinations. But the highly contagious viral disease remains one of the leading killers of young children.
 
Rotation01_Rescue02
In Focus

Mediterranean migration

Every year, thousands of people fleeing war, persecution and poverty at home attempt the treacherous journey across the Mediterranean. Countless lives are lost on the way.
 
Nigeria: Fighting the worst meningitis C epidemic in nine years
Medical Activities

Meningitis

Meningococcal meningitis is a highly contagious bacterial form of meningitis – a serious inflammation of the meninges – the thin lining that surrounds the brain and spinal cord.
Cholera intervention in South Kivu
Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)

Independent medical humanitarian assistance

We provide medical assistance to people affected by conflict, epidemics, disasters, or exclusion from healthcare. Our teams are made up of tens of thousands of health professionals, logistic and administrative staff - most of them hired locally. Our actions are guided by medical ethics and the principles of independence and impartiality. We are a non-profit, self-governed, member-based organisation.

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