Dialysis patients at high risk amid Gaza drug shortage

[ 12/06/2011 – 05:35 PM ]

GAZA, (PIC)– Dialysis patients in the Gaza Strip are at high risk as the medical supply crisis maintains a standstill, warned Adham Abu Salmiyya, the Strip’s supreme emergency committee spokesman, on Sunday.

With a shortage in 180 essential medical items and some 200 medical disposables, the decline could lead to the deaths of many of Gaza’s patients, Abu Salmiyya said while touring the Strip’s nearly empty warehouses.

He added that the Gaza health ministry has received just three drug items from the World Health Organization, and that the Red Cross has promised to cover some of the shortage but only enough to last a week.

According to his estimation, he said that what was currently available to the health ministry would only last another month.

Mohammed Abu Nada, who heads the children’s nerurology section at the Rantisi hospital, said that Gaza children are at higher risk of developing cerebral palsy, as the Strip has suffered a lack of drugs to treat seizures. The children affected by the drug’s shortage make up twenty percent of the hospital’s patients, he said.

Dr. Abdul-Salam Sabah, who also spoke during the tour, said that four cataract operations were postponed because of a lack of proper medicine.

He said more than ten operations had been delayed in the past two days, a situation that could lead to worsened conditions or even blindness in those patients.

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