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Pakistan is one of the most epidemic-prone countries in the world, with ever-present outbreaks of dengue, malaria, and the persistence of poliomyelitis transmission. Now, unprecedented flooding due to deadly monsoon rains is burdening 33 million of the country’s 222 million population.
Mental health is beginning to get the recognition it needs during public health emergencies, and COVID-19 resulted in more attention on its impact from policymakers, the media and the public. Now policymakers and mental health actors must capitalise on this increased attention, to prioritise mental health as much as physical health in outbreak response.
On 15 August 2021, Afghanistan was thrown into a state of shock and the nation plunged into chaos. The withdrawal of support from the United States and its Alliance led to the sudden collapse of the Afghan government after two decades of rebuilding.
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The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted us all in many different ways, but some of the hardest hit were schoolchildren. Many children and families were affected in different ways, and while there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence from the pupils, parents and teachers who experienced the challenges firsthand, we may not know the full implications of this pandemic on children for many years to come.