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PCHR Calls upon International Community to Assist Gaza Strip Healthcare System to Fight Coronavirus PDF Print E-mail
Mar 29, 2020 at 03:35 PM

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the Gaza Strip preparedness and capacity to face the Coronavirus at the present time is only sufficient for cases up to 100 or 150; however, if the cases increase, the fragile healthcare system would be incapable of responding to large numbers of patients. The situation requires the intervention of UN bodies, international and local organizations to exert  all efforts and provide the necessary equipment, devices, supplies, medicine and medical crews.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) in Gaza announced in its daily report on 28 March 2020, that the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the Gaza Strip is 9 while dozens of samples are so far under laboratory testing and their results will be published as soon as they are ready.  According to the report, MOH follows up the health status of 1,719 of the people who had returned from abroad at quarantine centers across the Gaza Strip, including 983 patients who require direct healthcare in hotels, health centers and hospitals. MOH added that the quarantine will be extended from two weeks to three according to the recommendations of experts due to international reports showing the emergence of the disease after the 2-week quarantine period ends.  MOH confirmed that it suffers from critical shortage of drugs, medical consumables, laboratory and blood banks supplies, and limited coronavirus testing materials, putting MOH before complicated and unpredictable challenges.

MOH officials in Gaza said to PCHR’s fieldworker that there is acute shortage in MOH’s needs to combat the coronavirus.  Hani al-Weheidi, Director of Information System Unit at the Ministry said that the healthcare sector in Gaza has only 110 intensive care beds for adults, including 78 at the MOH hospitals (Shifa 36, European Gaza 17, al-Aqsa 10, Indonesian 9, Naser 6) while the NGOs has 12 beds (al-Quds 7, Public Services 5, and Military Medical Services 7 at Kamal Owdan Hospital). Moreover, the Private Sector has 13 beds: al-Hayah hospital (8) and al-Helo Hospital (5).  According to the hospitals’ report, 72% of the intensive care beds are occupied at the MOH hospitals, i.e. if the coronavirus breaks out, only 22 out of 78 intensive care beds will be available in the MOH hospitals.

Ninety-three ventilators are available at intensive care units beds in the Gaza Strip, including 63 at MOH hospitals (al-Shifa 23; European 15; al-Aqsa 9; Indonesian 10; and Nasser 6) 9 at private hospitals (al-Quds 5; Public Aid 4). Additionally, blood gas analyzers are only available at 7 hospitals: al-Shifa, Nasser, al-Quds, Kamal Odwan, Public Aid, al-Helou and al-Hayat; and it is unavailable at 3 hospitals: Indonesian, European and al-Aqsa.

Accordingly, MOH – Gaza needs to urgently equip additional ICUs, ventilators, and testing kits; as well as, protective gear to protect personnel, medications and medical disposables to combat coronavirus. MOH – Gaza has announced its immediate need for:

  • 28 types of medical disposables (emergency list A).[1]
  • 9 types of medications specific for treating coronavirus (emergency list A).[2]
  • 6 types of COVID-19 testing kits, and laboratory equipment (Immediate need list A).[3]
  • Real Time PCR Systems Spectral Calibration Kit (Immediate need list B)[4]
  • 6 laboratory testing devices to enhance laboratory capacity (Immediate need list C)[5]

In light of the extreme danger threatening the Gaza Strip’s health sector due to its limited capacities, especially in terms of diagnostic laboratory equipment, medications and medical disposables, PCHR:

  • Reiterates that the primary responsibility for providing the Gaza Strip with medical supplies lies with Israel, and it should take all necessary and available preventive measures to combat the spread of infectious diseases and this pandemic, according to Articles 55 and 56 of the 4th Geneva Convention of 1949.
  • Calls upon the international community and the World Health Organization to pressure Israel to force it to abide by its duties and to allow the entry of the Gaza Strip’s medical needs, especially medical equipment and devices necessary for COVID-19 medical examination.
  • Calls upon the international community and humanitarian organizations to provide aid and assistance to the Gaza Strip’s health sector and to endeavor to supply the needed medical equipment to Gaza hospitals to combat the spread of coronavirus. 

Public Document

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For more information please call PCHR office in Gaza, Gaza Strip, on +972 8 2824776 - 2825893

Gaza- Jamal ‘Abdel Nasser “al-Thalathini” Street - Al-Roya Building- Floor 12 , El Remal, PO Box 1328 Gaza, Gaza Strip. E-mail: pchr@pchrgaza.org , Webpage http://www.pchrgaza.org

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[1] To see full list, please visit MOH-Gaza website: http://www.moh.gov.ps/file_api/assets/uploads/files/7d526-a.pdf

[2] To see full list, please visit MOH-Gaza website: http://www.moh.gov.ps/file_api/assets/uploads/files/53dc9-a.pdf

[3] To see full list, please visit MOH-Gaza website: http://www.moh.gov.ps/file_api/assets/uploads/files/a07e7-a.pdf

[4] To see full list, please visit MOH-Gaza website: http://www.moh.gov.ps/file_api/assets/uploads/files/9f658-b-.pdf

[5] To see full list, please visit MOH-Gaza website: http://www.moh.gov.ps/file_api/assets/uploads/files/a506e-c-.pdf

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Vancouver panel says: "Enough!"
Wednesday, June 6th, 2007

It is the conviction of Canpalnet that there are many and varied pathways that can and do bring Canadians to a simple conclusion; namely, that Israel's occupation must be ended, for elementary justice, and to salvage the humanity of all.

To illustrate this, a diverse and distinguished panel of speakers assembled in Vancouver at a press conference on June 6th to express their opposition to Israel’s 40 year occupation of Palestinian lands, and to call for the government of Canada to take action against that occupation and in support of human rights and international law. The conference took place in the Bank of Nova Scotia Room at Simon Fraser University’s Harbour Centre campus in downtown Vancouver.

Dr. Naseer Aruri, noted Palestinian intellectual and prolific author, was a special guest. Born in Jerusalem, now Emeritus Chancellor Professor at the University of Massachussetts, he has been a member of the international board of Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch (USA), and Palestinian human rights groups. His most recent work is Dishonest Broker: The U.S. Role in Israel and Palestine.

A statement of support was sent by the all-party parliamentary group in Ottawa, the Canada Palestine Parliamentary Association.

That message and the statements of the panelists (listed below) are posted on this site.  

  • Svend Robinson, long time member of Parliament.
  • Sister Elizabeth Kelliher, of the Franciscan Sisters of the Atonement.
  • Murray Dobbin, journalist, broadcaster, and author of books on Canadian politics.
  • David Diamond, founder and artistic director of Headlines Theatre and recipient of the City of Vancouver’s Cultural Harmony Award.
  • Lee Lakeman, organizer of Vancouver Rape Relief and Women’s Shelter and a representative for the Canadian Association of Sexual Assault Centers.
  • Carl Rosenberg, editor of Canadian Jewish Outlook Magazine.
  • Terry Greenberg, recently retired member of Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs.
  • Reverend Brenda Faust, Minister of Port Coquitlam Trinity United Church.
  • Henry Krause, pastor of Langley Mennonite Fellowship.
  • Cynthia Flood, prize-winning Canadian short-story writer.
  • Dr. Ivar Ekeland, Canada Research Chair in Mathematical Economics at UBC and former President of the University of Paris-9.
  • Ken Davidson, head of the International Solidarity Committee of CUPE (Canadian Union of Public Employees).
  • Thekla Lit, founder and president of BC ALPHA (Association for Learning and Preserving the History of World War 2 in Asia).

To see podcast of press conference:

40 Years of Occupation(Part 1) Press Conf. WM video - 9 mins - June 6, 2007

40 Years of Occupation(Part 2) Press Conf. video - 9 mins - June 6, 2007

 

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