Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) has commenced a series of health projects in Gaza, including life-saving medical interventions, supplies, and capacity-building, which will ultimately translate into high-quality services for the population.
With the new $4 million plan, there will be an opportunity to improve the poor humanitarian conditions in Gaza, following 13 years of blockade. Since 2010, QRCS has implemented over 90 humanitarian projects there, totaling $110 million in value.
“Currently, 11 medical projects are in progress,” said Dr. Akram Nassar, Director of QRCS’s representation office in Gaza. “These include the enhancement of specialized surgical, dialysis, and chemotherapy services, as well as the development of the Al-Amal Hospital”.
The aim of these projects is to back the health sector, which has recently been subject to pressures of limited financial resources and lack of medical supplies. “We are putting $4 million funding in this, based on an assessment of the most critical health care needs to make things a little bit better in Gaza,” he explained.
Building upon QRCS’s medical expertise contracting program being implemented since 2010, the specialized surgery support project involves hiring consultants in key specializations like cardiothoracic surgery, urology, anesthesia, vascular surgery, and oncology. With these medical services made available, there will be a reduced need for the patients to travel abroad for treatment.
Another aspect of the project is building the capacity of local medical professionals, whose will be supervised and guided by the hired senior physicians. Also, they will benefit from in-house training programs on clinical pharmacy, advanced minimally invasive surgery (MIS), MSc in Health Care Management, Diploma in Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, and treatment of children with phenylketonuria (PKU). The overall budget of this project amounts to $1.4 million.
“The second project on the list is designed to support dialysis services,” Dr. Nassar added. “Special attention is paid to the patients with kidney failure, in an attempt to relieve their pain and save their lives through kidney transplantations. At a total cost of $486,000, we will procure 10 medical equipment and related drugs and dialysate solutions, for the benefit of 816 patients, 36 of whom are kids”.
Dr. Mohamed Abo Nada, Director of the Abdel-Aziz Rantisi Specialist Hospital, talked about support for the patients with cancer in Gaza. “With support from QRCS, chemotherapy medicines will be provided for women with breast cancer and children with cancer. These supplies will solve the shortage in such medicines, which is detrimental to the lives of those patients”.
Under the new project, cancer medicines will be secured for 8,800 patients for 10 months, at a cost of $888,000.
In line with the strategic plan of Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) to upgrade health facilities in Gaza, QRCS will develop the surgical services at the Al-Amal Hospital, with a budget of $486,000.
According to Dr. Wael Makki, the hospital’s director, two operating rooms are totally renovated and furnished, in order to reduce the surgical waiting list at the hospital, where 200 operations are performed per month.