The challenges and our response
Since the outbreak of war in Libya in early 2011, the country has faced ongoing economic and political instability, and fighting between violent militias.
Shortly after conflict broke out, International Medical Corps immediately deployed teams to Libya to provide country-wide emergency medical services, train health workers and deliver vital medicines and supplies.
Today, continued armed conflict and political instability have impacted over three million people and hindered their access to basic services, safety and security. International Medical Corps is still one of the few international organisations that has supported conflict-affected populations in Libya and among three organisations that has relocated expatriate personnel back to Libya since fighting escalated in 2014. Current program activities are supporting some of the country’s most vulnerable populations—including internally displaced persons (IDPs), refugees and asylum seekers—and providing relief to Libya’s fractured health system.
Health Care Support
International Medical Corps operates six mobile medical units (MMUs) that serve IDPs in Benghazi, Misrata, Sabha and Tripoli. The MMUs are supported by community health workers who raise awareness among target communities on common health problems, to promote family well-being and prevent disease outbreaks.
Training in Reproductive Health and Mental Health and Psychosocial Support
International Medical Corps has a mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) specialist who provides mental health training for medical personnel in Libya. This specialist helps medical doctors navigate the identification, management and referral of priority mental health conditions in line with World Health Organization guidelines. We also employ a team of psychiatrists who are led by our MHPSS specialist. These psychiatrists provide specialized services to patients identified by medical doctors, and refer more severe cases to the national psychiatric hospital.
Protection and Gender-Based Violence (GBV)
With the support of our in-country GBV specialist, International Medical Corps’ Libya staff have been trained on the basics of protection for women and children, GBV in emergencies and case management of rape. We have created a women’s and girl’s safe space (WGSS) in one of the IDP camps in Tripoli, a place where women and girls can feel physically and emotionally secure, tailored to their needs and the context. Programming in the WGSS includes life-skills courses, as well as psychosocial support and medical treatment for those seeking care.