The safety of medical personnel working in armed conflicts has deteriorated significantly over the past decade. Attacks on health care workers and hospitals are a growing concern and have a devastating and lasting impact on the availability of health care for the sick and wounded.
In order to provide effective solutions to protect health care workers and their facilities, the Swisscross Foundation is determined to fully apprehend the conditions on the ground. As the environment of war is unpredictable and rapidly changing, it is integral to thoroughly address the topic of protection and safety in order to provide innovative solutions that work.
Safety is about perception and acceptance. Mediation and consultation with local authorities and communities to facilitate access to medical care. Respecting the protected status of any medical facility, is as much part of the responsibility of the Swisscross expert team as the training and supervision of local staff. Physical security of hospitals can be improved by simple non-lethal means such as reinforcing essential infrastructure with fences, sandbags, security checks, lightning, dogs, guards etc.