A War on Health - Juzoor's Report on Health Sector in Gaza

 

A War on Health 
Gaza’s Battle for Survival in a Shattered Health System 

Today’s Israeli war on Gaza has become one of the worst humanitarian and health crises in modern history, as six months of relentless bombardment have brought about unprecedented levels of suffering. While global attention goes to the lethality of the war, with tens of thousands of Palestinians killed and many more injured, little attention is given to the profound destruction and irreversible damage inflicted on the region. The effects of this war have been multifaceted, creating hidden problems, particularly health ones, that are too far beyond human imagination. Unfortunately, war does not happen to those killed, but to everyone else left alive. With bombardments having destroyed Gaza’s health sector – and invariably compromising the population’s chances of survival – those still alive are left to pay the heavy price of living.

 

Current Context

The healthcare crisis in Gaza was dire even before October 7 due to the 16-year blockade and recurring bombardments and hostilities that limited the movement of people and essential supplies, including medical equipment. The recent war has exacerbated the crisis in Gaza, severely compromising its already failing health system. The assault on infrastructure, combined with shortages of vital medical supplies and healthcare professionals, has pushed the system to the brink of total collapse. Health facilities and personnel have not been spared from the damage; hospitals have been pushed out of service or razed to the ground, and medical supplies are almost completely depleted, resulting in a catastrophic health situation for the entire population, especially for the thousands of critically-injured patients who are at risk of imminent death. The challenges Gaza’s healthcare has been facing and continues to face are multifaceted, with primary and secondary consequences of war straining the system to a breaking point. 

As Gaza's health care system crumbles, the toll of civilian casualties, injuries, and displacements continues to escalate. As of 5 March 2024 (day 153 of the war), more than 30,717 Palestinians have been killed, over 73,000 have been wounded and over 10,000 are still buried under the rubble (presumed dead) in the Gaza Strip. Most fatalities are reportedly women and children, including an estimated 9,000 women and over 14,000 children. According to the United Nations (UN), around 1.9 million people, or 85% percent of Gaza’s 2.2 million residents have been displaced across the besieged enclave, including one million women and children.14 Families have had to relocate numerous times seeking safety, now finding themselves clustered into ...  Read the full report >>  (PDF)

 

 

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