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OUR COVID-19 RESPONSE IN PALESTINE AND GAZA

Our concerns

MedicalVulnerable people groups
Mental health patients, their families, healthcare workers and first responders in the West Bank are particularly vulnerable to the anxiety surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Our response

MedicalSupporting health authorities
MSF is supporting a Palestinian Red Crescent Society hospital in Nablus with skilled human resources and medical and logistical supplies. In Hebron, Dura, we are supporting infection prevention control, triage, intensive care and the provision of water and sanitation services.  

MedicalMental health support
MSF is operating a hotline offering remote counselling services in the West Bank, supporting mental health patients, their families, medical staff and other first responders affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

MedicalEquipping healthcare staff
We have provided infection prevention control and PPE advice and training in Gaza, and have donated essential drugs, equipment, consumables and PPE to healthcare facilities in the region, as well as sanitation and first-aid training in Hebron. 

MedicalCommunity education
To reduce COVID-19 misinformation, we are running a Facebook campaign sharing COVID-19 health messages across Gaza. This campaign has reached nearly a million people. 

Exposed to both direct and indirect trauma, violence, raids on their homes, and arrests of family members, the ongoing occupation of Palestine by Israel continues to have a serious impact on the physical and psychological health of the Palestinian people.

The 10-year blockade imposed by Israel, and the fighting between the various Palestinian authorities, have contributed to the deterioration in the general socio-economic situation in Gaza.

More than half of the population is unemployed, electricity is restricted to a few hours per day, there is a lack of clean drinking water. People’s movements in and out of the Strip are extremely limited, preventing them from seeking specialised healthcare.

Gaza - Lifelong impact of gunshot injuries

Our staff work in three clinics in Gaza, providing specialist care for burns and trauma patients, such as dressings, physiotherapy and occupational therapy. We run mental health programs in Hebron, Nablus, Qalqilya, Bethlehem and Ramallah governorates offering psychological and social support to victims of political violence.

Despite the technical experience of our nurses and physiotherapists, their work is complicated by the limited access to essential medications (such as painkillers).

Complex cases that cannot be handled in Gaza are referred to MSF’s reconstructive surgery hospital in Jordan. However, due to administrative restrictions, less than half of referred cases receive permission from Israeli authorities to leave Gaza for treatment.

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