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Anabah Surgical and Paediatric Centre

 EMERGENCY’s first medical facility in Afghanistan was in Anabah.


Over the past forty years Afghanistan has been ravaged by conflict, causing high numbers of civilian casualties; many of whom are killed or injured by explosive devices and landmines. Despite increasing clearance activities, Afghanistan remains one of the world’s most heavily land-mined nations. Many of the southern and central provinces experience fighting and violence on a daily basis. The resulting instability has forced many to abandon their livelihoods and flee, in search of safety.

Recent estimates indicate that over 9 million people in the country have limited or no access to healthcare services. The services that do exist are often inadequately equipped to meet the needs of the population. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) there are only two doctors; five nurses and midwives; and less than one pharmacist per 10,000 inhabitants.

Increasing levels of violence against medical facilities is also a major concern. In 2016 alone, 119 such incidents were recorded. These attacks have long-term repercussions which extend far beyond their immediate aftermath. Attacks on medical facilities affect not only medical personnel and infrastructure, but also those people who are reliant upon them for essential healthcare. It is within this context that EMERGENCY operates various services throughout the country.

The Surgical and Paediatric Centre  

EMERGENCY’s Anabah Surgical and Paediatric Centre, in the mountainous Panjshir region, was the first EMERGENCY facility established in Afghanistan.

In 1999, we converted a former barracks into a Surgical Centre for War Victims.

An ambulance service connects the Surgical and Paediatric Centre in Anabah to a network of First Aid Posts (FAPs) and Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs), opened by EMERGENCY in the Panjshir Valley and in the neighbouring provinces of Kapisa, Parwan, Badakhshan, and on the Salang Pass. The staff at these clinics stabilise patients and, if required, arrange onward transportation to Anabah for further treatment. This wider network of services ensures access to emergency care for those in more isolated regions; cut off for much of the year by snow and a lack of decent road infrastructure.


The hospital is a major training centre for local medical staff, with well-established specialisation programmes. Using classroom lessons and on-the-job training, the courses last three years, during which international staff train local doctors to an excellent standard. Our hospital in Anabah is formally recognised as a centre for specialist training in general surgery, gynaecology, obstetrics, and paediatrics.


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This project is funded by European Union Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid

Programme Data

Location: Anabah, Panjshir Valley

Start of clinical activities: December 1999

Activities: Surgery for war victims, emergency surgery, general surgery, traumatology, internal medicine, paediatrics.

Facilities: Accident and emergency, clinic, 2 operating theatres, sterilisation, intensive care, wards, physiotherapy, radiology, laboratory and blood bank, pharmacy, classrooms, playroom, technical and support services.

Medical and surgical outpatient consultations: 375,222

Medical and surgical admissions: 46,040

Surgical operations: 41,282

Paediatric outpatient consulations: 222,345

Paediatric admissions: 15,474

(Data correct as of December 2021)


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