Médecins Sans Frontières is an international humanitarian medical association, created in 1971 in Paris by doctors and journalists.
For nearly fifty years, Médecins Sans Frontières has provided medical assistance to populations whose life or health are threatened, in France or abroad: mainly in the event of armed conflicts, but also of epidemics, pandemics, natural disasters or exclusion of care.
Medicine in a precarious context is at the heart of the activity of Médecins Sans Frontières, which can provide a wide range of care: consultations, hospitalizations, surgical interventions, psychological care, medico-nutritional care, etc. MSF can also provide material and health assistance to improve the living conditions of people affected by a crisis.
Gathered around the same charter, MSF teams bring together health, logistics and administrative professionals of dozens of different nationalities, expatriates or locally employed. After an assessment of the needs of the populations, they provide assistance in accordance with medical ethics and the principles of humanitarian action.
Impartiality is the foundation of Médecins Sans Frontières’ mission. It distributes its aid without discrimination, giving priority to the people most immediately in danger.
Based on its activities and the reality observed in the field, MSF reports on its interventions. It communicates publicly to bear witness to the fate of the populations with which it intervenes, and to inform about the extent, effectiveness or objectives of the relief efforts.
Médecins Sans Frontières acts in a spirit of neutrality and does not take sides in the event of an armed conflict. It may, however, be called upon to publicly denounce and criticize obstacles to its humanitarian assistance and breaches of international conventions.
The guarantee of the association’s autonomy and independence is rooted in its funding, provided by the generosity of its private donors. In France, in 2018, 98.8% of MSF’s resources were from private sources.
To carry out its activities, MSF has developed structures that are essential for the practice of independent and quality humanitarian action: they are dedicated to supplying its missions, to critical reflection on practices in the field or to access to appropriate medication.
Médecins Sans Frontières is present in more than 70 countries around the world, with more than 90 medical assistance operations. It employs over 38,000 people each year.