Afghanistan’s health system on the brink as Taliban confront a difficult winter

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Health facilities in parts of Afghanistan have shut down and in the capital, Kabul, hospitals are functioning without electricity or water supply as the country suffers a humanitarian crisis following the Taliban takeover and suspension of international aid. FRANCE 24 reports from Kabul.

A nurse at the Wazir Mohamad Akbar Khan National Hospital opens one empty drawer after another. "You see, we don't have any medicine here. We used to have antibiotics, pain-killers, and vitamins here, but it's empty now,” says Masood, a nurse at the state hospital who goes by one name.

Opening another set of drawers, Masood continues: “We used to have medicines for heart patients here. Now we don’t have even a tablet left.”

The healthcare system in Afghanistan is struggling to cope with the freezing of international aid following the August 15 Taliban takeover.

The economic and security crisis coupled with the onset of winter has forced the closure of more than 2,000 health facilities, according to the Red Cross. While this hospital in Kabul is still accepting patients, staff have not been paid their salaries for months and patients are forced to buy their own medication, a difficult prospect during an economic crisis.

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