Actions of states and non-state actors, terrorist groups in wars, and armed conflicts or atrocities committed by them deeply affect civilians including people affected by MS and leaves them at extreme risk.
The healthcare services can be severely impacted too due to the destruction of the health infrastructure, the internal displacement or flight abroad of the healthcare personnel, and interruption of medicine supply and stocks. This leaves people affected by MS with limited or absence of healthcare support, which is necessary to manage their MS.
On top of the many risks civilians encounter during wars and conflicts, people affected by MS can have to deal with additional risks due to loss of support networks, lack of access to healthcare, and/or mobility challenges.
Those fleeing or being displaced in another country face many challenges. Lack of understanding and or lack of access to the healthcare system, treatment reimbursement, and insurance coverages are few to name among a long list of barriers people affected by MS need to navigate on their own.
As in peacetime, MS organisations play an important role in supporting people affected by MS during wars and conflicts.
The MS International Federation (MSIF) stands in solidarity with all people affected by MS and the organisations who support them wherever they live in the world.
We condemn actions of any government, non-state actor, or terrorist group targeting civilians or civilian objects including; hospitals, healthcare infrastructure, or disrupting healthcare services essential for people affected by MS and people with other conditions.
Despite the fact that MSIF is not a humanitarian organisation nor do we operate in a way that enables us to do so, we do what we can within our mandate and capacity, and in collaboration with our network of members and partners to help people affected by MS in war and conflict zones.
Throughout the MS movement, we have seen many great examples of MS organisations supporting one another in times of peace and war. Only by this solidarity and collaborative spirit, we will be able to alleviate the consequences of wars and conflicts for those living with MS.