HEALTH SECURITY, vol.14, no.4, pp.220-225, 2016 (SSCI)
After the Arab Spring uprising, Syria descended into a civil war in 2011. By March 2016, the United Nations reported that 13.5 million Syrians required humanitarian assistance, including 6.6 million internally displaced persons and more than 4.8 million refugees outside of Syria. Turkey is currently hosting the largest number of Syrian refugees-more than 2.7 million. A limited number of refugees are living in camps settled around the border, and others are spread throughout Turkey. This explosive and unexpected increase in the Syrian population in Turkey has had several negative impacts on health and social determinants. The overload of healthcare facilities has led to shortages in childhood immunization programs, drugs, and access to clean water and food supplies. According to Ministry of Health data, more than 7.5 million Syrians were examined at outpatient clinics, and 299,240 were hospitalized; most of those hospitalized were injured and wounded victims who require and have been occupying intensive care units. The refugees generally live in crowded and unsanitary conditions, which may lead to the spread of respiratory, skin, gastrointestinal, and genital system infections. Currently, measles, poliomyelitis, leishmaniasis, and multidrug-resistant tuberculosis are the reemerging infections being most frequently recorded. Multidrug-resistant gram-negative bacterial infections seem to be an increasing problem in gunshot or surgical wounds. Hepatitis A, malaria, and varicella have been seen with a high incidence among the refugees. There are many problems waiting to be resolved for health and living standards in Turkey.