Hamoon Mobile Health Team visited Kunar province which is located in eastern Afghanistan. This province has a beautiful landscape, with high green mountains and a big river. Kunar is famous for its green forest and beautiful river. We selected Nari which is the biggest district of Kunar.
Our team, which included a male and a female doctor with two pharmacists treated patients in three different villages.
On December 13, 2023, Hamoon mobile Health Team went to a village called Machmana which consisted of about 100 families. The team checked more than 150 patients. The nearest clinic was miles away and people had to walk for at least an hour to reach there. It only had a male doctor and a midwife which could not fulfil people’s need.
Children in the area suffered from seasonal illnesses and families were unable to pay for the treatment or buy medicine.
On the second day our health team traveled to Salam Sangi village. The people were very poor and suffered from various diseases.
200 patients were treated. Priority was given to women and children. The most common diseases in this village were anemia among women due to poor nutrition and gynecological conditions due to underage marriages. Most women were unable to go to the clinic due to poverty and complained about the high doctor's fees and drug prices. Stress and depression was visible from the faces of women and children.
Skin diseases among children were very common and we thought wetness of the area due to its closeness to river is one of the main reasons. Other reason is the air pollution as a result of US and Taliban military exercises in the mountainous areas of Nare district in the past.
The women had very painful stories of their life situation. At the age of fifteen, Marzia is forced and given to a man with a mental problem without her consent. The violence from her husband and the difficult daily house work has bent her back. Marzia is unaware of her basic rights because she is deprived of education, and she thinks that her bad luck is the reason for her current situation. She has two children whose faces show the miseries of their poor life.
Sakina is eighteen years old who is married two years ago. She has gynecological problem due to which she has twice lost two children of seven and nine months. Currently, a two-month-old child has died in her womb, but due to lack of money, she cannot go to visit a doctor to abort the child.
Adela is the mother of six children. She came from another village called Shah Masir for treatment. At the age of thirteen her father forced Adela to marry a man who is blind from both eyes. Luckily she is educated and has been able to work in a private school. She was able to study and get permission to work. The whole family depends on her financially.
Adela had many stories of honor killings in her village. A woman who was the mother of six children was murdered by her husband because she was in love with another man. In an ambush, he also killed that man. Taliban summons the man to their security department and cheers him for murdering the woman and the man.
Another boy with the girl he loved and his sister who helped them escape, are captured by the girl's brother and all three are shot on the same day. In most villages in Nari district it is customary if a girl runs away with a boy, they kill both the girl and the boy in order to prevent the family feud.
Laila is a beautiful girl who falls in love with a national army soldier. They both talk on mobile phones and exchange photos of each other. The boy is arrested by the Taliban. He tries to destroy his phone so that his conversation with Laila and her photos doesn't fall into the hands of the Taliban, but he fails. They kill the boy and distribute photos of Laila and their conversation in the area. After Laila's family learned about their daughter's relationship, on the second day of Eid her brother took his gun to kill her, she had fought for long to survive، had injured her brother’s face with nails but could not stop her brother. The story of Leila is wide spread among the villagers.
On 15-12-2023 our health team visited Nari village, checked the patients and gave medicine. Since it had already been declared through the mosque's loudspeaker, people also came from nearby villages. A total of 270 patients, including women and children, were treated by our doctors. Cold, sour throat, high blood pressure and skin diseases were very common. People complained about the price of medicine and doctor’s fee and they couldn't afford to visit a doctor. Their only income is from cultivation and hardly can pay for the expenses of food and clothing.
There is a private clinic in the same village, but people cannot go because of the excessive cost of treatment. Marzia goes to the doctor for allergy and is given a stimulant medication without her examination which causes lung inflammation and loses weight. Her sister who is a school teacher spends all her salary for the treatment of Marzia but has no positive results.
A five year old girl suffers from bladder inflammation and always has blood in her urine. Her mother has visited doctors many times, but her daughter has not recovered. This woman herself was very weak and suffering from anemia.
The people were happy and satisfied with the high quality of medicine that our team provided. They said it was the first time that we had a health team in our village and had experienced doctors with them. Every day at the end of the team work we used to talk to people about their problems and life situation.
The locals warmly welcomed us and invited us to visit beautiful sites in their village.