In southern Yemen, supporting the health system by rehabilitating health care facilities

In a country that has been at war for eight years, where the health system is very fragile, Première Urgence Internationale is working to improve access to care, particularly by rehabilitating health facilities.

réhabilitation des établissements de santé au Yémen

This center was rehabilitated with the support of Première Urgence Internationale (credit: Première Urgence Internationale)

In the governorate of Taizz (South Yemen), the Al Thawbani health unit is one of 18 health and nutrition facilities supported by Première Urgence Internationale. Our teams identified and targeted this health unit as it is the only health facility located in an area with important needs, and yet was in very poor condition. “It was a small building with four rooms and two bathrooms, two of which were ready to use and two of which had only walls. One bathroom was finished, but the other was incomplete,” said Yahya*, a member of the local district council.

Before Première Urgence Internationale intervened, only one nurse and one midwife were working in the health center, providing a minimum service. According to Yahya, the epidemics were on an alarming scale, as the facility could not treat most of the diseases present in the area. After Première Urgence Internationale identified the health center, obtained the necessary authorizations, and once our teams led a thorough evaluation, rehabilitation work began in June 2022. This rehabilitation included the renovation and maintenance of the building, the installation of a solar energy system, and the provision of furniture and medical devices. Meanwhile, the community worked on the construction of the exterior wall of the health facility.

Thanks to the comprehensive rehabilitation, which was completed in August 2022, as well as the provision of essential medicines, training and incentives to health staff, the number of patients admitted to the Al Thawbani health unit has increased. Indeed, between March and August 2022, a total of 5,712 consultations were conducted there. People from the community near the facility can now receive treatment for communicable and non-communicable diseases, acute malnutrition, and women can be seen for childbirth, as well as prenatal and postnatal care.


After eight years of war, Yemen is today the scene of one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world. Conflict, population displacement, economic collapse, institutional collapse… The health system is also very fragile, with half of the country’s health facilities not being fully functional due to lack of staff, equipment and materials. In 2023, an estimated 21.6 million people require humanitarian assistance and protection services (OCHA). In addition, more than 80% of the country’s population has difficulty accessing food, clean water and adequate health services.


Première Urgence Internationale has been present in Yemen since 2007 and assists the most vulnerable populations in the areas affected by the conflict, which are marked by high rates of food insecurity and severe chronic malnutrition. Our NGO aims to improve access to quality, safe, and integrated primary health care in supported health facilities to provide essential care that is age and gender appropriate. Our actions include training and supervision of health personnel, maintenance and rehabilitation of health facilities in Yemen and provision of primary health care. Première Urgence Internationale is supporting nine health facilities in northern and southern Yemen with funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development – USAID, for projects implemented between September 2021 and August 2022, and between September 2022 and September 2023.

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