Researching the Impact of Attacks on Healthcare (RIAH) project

HCRI researchers commence new five-year project to measure the impact of attacks on healthcare in conflict settings.

'Armed conflict' warning sign in foreground, and people going about daily business in the background.

A consortium of researchers, led by the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute at The University of Manchester in collaboration with the University of Geneva and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, have developed a new research programme: Researching the Impact of Attacks on Healthcare (RIAH). The programme currently receives funding from the UK Department of International Development.

The aim of the research is to improve the understanding of the nature, frequency, scale, and impact of attacks on healthcare in conflict through improved data collection and analysis.

Multiple international studies confirm a global consensus that attacks on health often threaten the sanctity of health care, disrespect the right to health care, and violate international humanitarian law.

Gathering evidence of attacks has to date been crucial in raising awareness of the issue. But existing evidence is largely restricted to the reporting of incidents and their immediate impact, and falls short of providing data on the longer-term and wider impacts of attacks on healthcare access and utilisation as well as broader public health outcomes. 

This research will transcend previous work on attacks against healthcare through rigorous new and sustained data collection over the lifetime of the project. It aims to produce data that generate stronger evidence of the scale and nature of the problem and document the impacts of the attacks to support global policy and advocacy efforts.

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This project is funded by the Department for International Development.

The Researching the Impact of Attacks on Healthcare (RIAH) Consortium consists of academics from HCRI, the University of Geneva (Centre for Education and Research in Humanitarian Action), the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and the University of California, Berkeley.

Insecurity Insight is working with us on the data collecting and processing work, and Chatham House, The Royal Institute of International Affairs, will work with us on policy and impact activities.

To be added to the mailing list for regular updates please email RIAH@manchester.ac.uk.

Project team/contact

For general queries contact RIAH@manchester.ac.uk.