Hospital on the Edge

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ICRC nurse Kristina Alho of Jyvaskyla, Finland, helps a mother breast feed in the women's intensive care unit at Mirwais Hospital in Kandahar, Afghanistan, April 23, 2009. The baby was delivered by Caesarian section and had been unable to breast feed. Afghanistan has one of the highest rates of infant mortality in the world. Despite worsening security, development continues at Mirwais Hosptial, where the International Committe of the Red Cross conducts training and assists the local staff. Mirwais is the main public hosptial serving five southern provinces. As security has deteriorated in the South, many international NGO's have pulled their staff from the area or shut down the regional office, stunting development in a region where it is badly needed.