Medical Care and Psychological Assistance to Refugees Fleeing the War in Ukraine.

Moldova - Bălți

Between April and December 2022, an EMERGENCY team provided primary medical care and psychological assistance in Bălți, the second most populous city in Moldova, to refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine.

Since the first days of the conflict, between February and March 2022, hundreds of thousands of people fleeing the conflict in Ukraine passed through Moldova, one of the poorest countries in Europe. Those fleeing were mostly women, elderly people and many children.

In March 2022, an EMERGENCY team went to Moldova to assess the needs of the population and identify the best way for us to intervene in collaboration with the local health authorities.

Based on the identified needs, we worked in Bălți, the second largest city in Moldova, where our Politruck offered health treatment and psychological assistance to refugees hosted in the asylum centre.

A team of doctors, nurses, psychologists, cultural mediators and logisticians offered basic medical care, nursing, psychological support, and counselling on the services available on the ground to people fleeing the war in Ukraine.

In June 2022, we also started a psycho-educational project for children and young people between the ages of 5 and 14, in cooperation with the city of Bălți and the ‘I. Creanga’ boarding school, with a pedagogical orientation. The activities also involved their parents and relatives.

In December 2022, given the progressive reduction in the number of patients in need of care – due both to a stabilisation of the number of refugees entering the country and to a strengthening of the Moldovan health system – the project in Bălți came to an end, with the handover of our activities to the local health authorities.

The Politruck and the clinic in Bălți

The Politruck is the largest of EMERGENCY’s mobile clinics. It is equipped with a waiting room, two outpatient clinics and a station for psychological counselling and mediation interviews.

In the first phase of the intervention, activities took place on the Politruck. With the arrival of the cold season in October, the activities moved to the outpatient clinic in the city of Bălți.


The psychological consequences of war

If, at the beginning of the project, refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine turned to us mainly for medical and nursing services, as the weeks went by the need for psychological support also emerged, to manage reactions to the trauma of war and flight and relations with the children who had to leave their homes and country.

Alongside the health activities, we therefore offered an initial psychological intervention, with the aim of containing and reducing the discomfort due to the reaction to the traumatic event and the possible repercussions on the person’s psychophysical health. The aim was to optimise treatment time and avoid the accumulation, over time, of other disorders.