With the escalating plan of austerity announced by the Ministry of Health in Gaza, the hospitals are about to collapse with thousands of patients’ lives.
On Monday, four hospitals in Gaza announced that they might shut down for lack of fuel needed to run engines. The ministry announced austerity plan in attempts to retrieve the work of the hospitals, but the consequences might be fatal.
The ministry said that the “political curse” this time will hit the patients, who are the most in need for the reconciliation between the Palestinian fractions, to obtain the required financial aids and services.
Spokesman for the Gaza health ministry, Dr. Ashraf Al-Qidra stressed that the conditions in the hospitals and medical centers are going through serious crises.
“The situation in Gaza’s biggest hospitals is critical, and we had to use an emergency plan to deal with it and not let it affect the patients for the sensitivity of their cases.”
Two days ago, Al-Qidra posted on his Facebook page that Al-Shifa Hospital, Kamal Adwan Hospital, Gaza European Hospital and Al-Rantisi Hospital for Children, are all threatened to stop working very shortly for lack of fuel in their engines.
Al-Qidra pointed out that the hospitals need the amount of 400,000 liters of Solar, which cost about seven million dollars, to activate the electric engines, adding that the hospitals and clinics have no operational budget now, causing a huge crisis.
As part of the austerity plan at the hospitals, heart surgeries in the European hospital in Gaza have stopped, and Al-Shifa medical complex in Gaza only receives urgent cases. In addition, the Cardiac Catheterization services which were decreased by half, in addition to the closure of an Obstetrics Center, and halt of the night shift at the urgent care for two centers.
According to the ministry, the health sector needs a yearly operational budget of $40 million, to cover the lack of drugs, health supplies and oil to operate alternative electric generators.
The role of reconciliation government:
Undersecretary of the Ministry of Health in Gaza, Dr. Youssef Abu Al-Reesh, said that the crisis responsibility goes to the national reconciliation government.
Abu Al-Reesh told PNN that the reconciliation government completely gave up on Gaza, and does not offer any financial support or medicines that could overcome the current situation, leaving thousands of patients to suffer, especially with the Israeli siege on Gaza and the accumulation of patients during last year’s Israeli offensive, which killed over 2,200 and left about 11,000 wounded.
In turn, the Ministry of health in Ramallah denied the existence of any crises in Gaza hospitals, saying that there is enough oil that can cover the period until the end of October.
Spokesman for the ministry in Ramallah said that the Gaza hospitals receive grant from the Islamic Development Bank which provides about 120 thousand liters of oil each month.
The spokesman added that the Ministry of Health in Ramallah sent two million NIS (about $500,000) for cleaning companies in the health sector.
The Ministry of Health in Ramallah sends supplies to Gaza:
The Palestinian Minister of Health, Dr. Jawad Awwad on Wednesday said that a five million NIS worth of medical supplies was sent to Gaza from the West Bank city of Nablus.
Awwad, in a press statement today said that the loads contain drugs, hormones, antibiotics, intravenous solutions, vaccines and supplies for operation rooms and laboratories.