Gaza: Health Sector may collapse due to shortage of medicines

 PNN/ Gaza/

The Palestinian Center for  Human Rights (PCHR) said it’s deeply concerned over the severe lack of medicines and medical consumables in the Gaza Strip Hospitals, warning that  conditions of the Gaza Strip patients would deteriorate due to the shortage of medicine and periodic medications, which are not available in the Gaza healthcare facilities.

PCHR called upon the Ministry of Health in Ramallah to guarantee the free and secure flow of all consignments of medicines and needed medical supplies for the health facilities in the Gaza Strip.

According to PCHR’s follow-up, on Monday, 01 January 2018, the Ministry of Health in Gaza City warned of the dangers of continued lack of medicine and medical disposables on the general health situation in the Gaza Strip, including stoppage of all surgeries and medical services in the coming days in the Gaza Strip hospitals.

Moneer al-Bursh, Director General of Pharmacy in the Health Ministry, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that the Gaza Strip is going through a rapid collapse in the health system as the Ministry of Health in Ramallah has stopped supplying medicines and medical consumables. He added that hospitals and health facilities in the Gaza Strip have suffered from shortage of important types of medicines (229 types i.e. 46% of the main list ran out). Al-Bursh also said that the warehouses of the Ministry of Health in Gaza City completely ran out of antiseptics, disinfectants and antibiotics used by patients after undergoing surgeries.

Abdul Latif Al-Hajj, General Director of Hospitals in the Ministry of Health, confirmed that the Ministry has tried to save the available medicine for emergency cases and followed the austerity policy according to urgent priorities to conduct surgeries. Al-Haj highlighted that the surgeries service would be in real danger if  the quantities of medicines were still the same in Gaza hospitals and if as well Ramallah Ministry of Health did not fulfill its responsibilities in providing the medical supplies for the Gaza Strip. Al-Haj stressed  that the Ministry in Ramallah has no decision to import the medical supplies.

During their follow up, PCHR received several complaints from patients about the delay in receiving their medications from the healthcare facilities due to the shortage of medicines in the Ministry’s warehouses in Gaza City, calling upon calls upon the Palestinian President Mahmoud ‘Abbas to immediately intervene to ensure the immediate supply of necessary medications and medical consignment into the Gaza Strip; and, and called upon the National Unity Government to take necessary measures to immediately supply all the medical disposables, so that the services in the Gaza Strip health facilities and hospitals would continue.

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