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UN warns of deteriorating capacity of Gaza’s largest hospitals

A child receives medical care in a hospital in Gaza [File photo]
A child receives medical care in a hospital in Gaza [File photo]

The Humanitarian Coordinator for the occupied Palestinian territory, Jamie McGoldrick, visited Al-Shifa Hospital, Gaza’s largest hospital, and documented the suffering of medical staff and patients there.

The hospital’s staff stressed to McGoldrick that they are no more able to provide the necessary care for the sick and wounded patients, they have a severe shortage of essential medicines and medical supplies, and they are unable to pay the medical staff’s salaries.

During his talks with the hospital’s staff, McGoldrick said: “The healthcare sector has been suffering from a severe shortage of funding for years and the siege the occupation has been imposing on the Gaza Strip for 12 years has prevented access to basic goods, supplies and medicines.”

He added: “The only way out of this situation is to find a political solution and until then, support for basic life-saving services in Gaza must be increased.”

For his part, a senior doctor at the hospital, Dr Mahmoud Matar pointed out to McGoldrick to the lack of basic resources in the hospital and said: “the worst feeling for the doctor is the inability to provide what is necessary to save the patient’s life.”

Read: The end of a reckless Israeli jaunt in Gaza

Matar called on the international community to help the hospitals in Gaza and provide them with the necessary medical tools to be able to deal with the large number of patients, which exceeds the capacities of the local staff.

About 20,000 people were injured in the March of Return demonstrations, 5,000 of who were shot by live bullets.

Because of the increase in the number of patients, the hospital was forced to postpone about 8000 surgical operations for cancer, heart disease, and other diseases.

 

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