Lebanon

Our Role and Approach

Since 2008, MSF has worked continuously in Lebanon, ensuring access to free, quality healthcare for some of the most vulnerable people, including Lebanese people, displaced communities and migrant workers.

In the past two years and as a result of the country’s ongoing economic collapse, people’s humanitarian needs have drastically increased, and we have adapted our projects accordingly. While some of our medical responses are adapted to specific needs, most of our medical services are accessible to everyone without distinction. In recent years we have seen a significant increase in the number of Lebanese people coming to our medical facilities.

We retain the capacity to respond to various types of medical emergencies, such as our response to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020-21 and our emergency cholera response which began in October 2022.

At the same time, strengthening and enhancing the capacities of healthcare providers at local and national levels is a priority. We are constantly increasing our support to the Lebanese Ministry of Public Health, by training staff, by donating medicines and medical supplies, and by building the capacity of various health facilities across Lebanon.

Today, our long-term activities include reproductive healthcare, mental healthcare, surgical care, wound care, treatment for non-communicable diseases, and routine vaccinations for children across the country. We also provided treatment for children living with thalassaemia in Bar Elias.

In Lebanon in 2022, around 700 MSF staff worked in seven locations across the country. MSF brought in 91 tons of aid to help provide free medical care to people in need in Lebanon.
In the past three years, Lebanon’s multi-layered has pushed more than 80 per cent of the country’s inhabitants into poverty. The highly privatised healthcare system in Lebanon is a major barrier to ensuring accessible, affordable and quality healthcare services for all. With the multiple crises faced by Lebanon since October 2019, people’s access to healthcare has become even more challenging, with more people relying on deteriorating public services and on humanitarian assistance to meet their medical needs.
The impact of Lebanon’s crises on people’s everyday lives and on their humanitarian needs are significant. This deserves more attention and a search for solutions – not only short-term solutions, but also long-term political, economic and social reforms. Today, many people in Lebanon are concerned about whether they can put food on the table or find the medications they need. There is a strong sense of social and communal solidarity in Lebanon, and often this is the only way that people can survive. The recent increase in departures by sea reflects people’s vulnerability and frequent despair. The growing numbers of medical and paramedical professionals leaving Lebanon in search of better work opportunities and living conditions abroad are an indication of the dire situation that the country is in.