Renewable energy ensures the continued functioning of health facilitiesNFDHR: ADEL OTHMAN - Wednesday, 12 September, 2018
The war has led to the collapse of the electricity sector in general and the exit of the national electricity system from service. This has led to total darkness in the whole of Yemen.
The health sector was severely affected by the interruption of the electricity service, which was dependent on the national system for lighting, operating medical equipment and refrigerator for vaccines, medicines, and operating tools and sterilization equipment.
In rural and remote areas, private generators were used to generate electricity, but the high prices of diesel and the lack of an operational budget for the facilities led to the suspense of operating medical equipment and refrigerators, thus stopping some medical services and vaccinations.
The National Foundation for Development and Humanitarian Response (NFDHR) has been keen to provide alternatives to solve the problem of electricity outages in health facilities and ensure the continuity of electricity service without any cost. For this reason, NFDHR found renewable energy as the best and most practical option to provide electricity to health facilities.
Since the beginning of 2017 up until mid-2018, NFDHR has provided 57 health facilities with modern solar systems, as part of a plan for the rehabilitation and support of health facilities aimed at strengthening the health system and continuing to provide primary health services to citizens.
The health facilities which have been rehabilitated and supported by NFDHR are located in the governorates of Al-Bayda, Al-Mahwit, Hajjah, Hodeida and Sa’ada.
In order to ensure the efficiency of the solar energy systems, NFDHR hired consultants and engineers specialized in renewable energy systems to determine the technical specifications, operational efficiency and installation of the systems in-line with the actual needs of health facilities.
"Electricity is a key element in the health sector, and without it they cannot operate in. Most medical devices are electrically operated," said Dr. Abdu alwahab Zeina, Manager of the health and nutrition program at NFDHR.
He added: "Since 2015, Yemen has witnessed a frightening decline in all service sectors, including the electricity sector, so it was necessary to think about practical solutions to mitigate the negative effects of the interruption of electricity service in the health sector.
Renewable energy systems contributed to the continuation of health facilities, provide primary health services and safe motherhood services, and ensured the preservation of vaccines and continued immunization of children against deadly childhood diseases.