WHO replenishes trauma meds in blockaded Gaza

The World Health Organisation (WHO), with support from the European Union, “is replenishing stocks of urgently-needed trauma medicines in Gaza, and providing hands-on training for health staff working in frontline trauma stabilisation points (TSPs)”, according to a WHO press release yesterday.

“Life-saving medicines and medical supplies to treat more than 100 000 people have been delivered to hospitals and TSPs,” stated the WHO, “filling critical gaps as supplies rapidly deplete as a result of increasing numbers of casualties injured in ongoing [Great March of Return] demonstrations.”

“The role of health workers at trauma stabilisation points is crucial,” said Dr Gerald Rockenschaub, WHO’s Head of Office for Gaza and the West Bank.

“Health staff in TSPs are usually the first to see wounded patients, and their capacity to resuscitate, stabilise, and treat patients with serious injuries can significantly increase patients’ chances of survival before they are referred to hospital for further medical care,” he added.

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“A chain is only as strong as its weakest link,” says Michelle Čičić, who oversees the EU’s humanitarian operations in Palestine. “It is critical that we are able to provide patients with life-saving care from the point of injury to the moment they are released from hospital. This serves to improve the health system in Gaza as a whole.”

The WHO states that from 30 March to the beginning of September, “more than 18,000 people have been injured during the ongoing demonstrations in Gaza”, of which more than 8,600 were managed and directly discharged at TSPs, and 9,500 referred to hospitals for specialised care.

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“When I was shot in the leg, I was taken to the closest trauma stabilisation centre which was less than 5 minutes away. Doctors treated my injury and made sure I was stable enough to be taken to hospital. Without this immediate medical care to save my leg, I would have survived the journey to hospital, but my leg could have been permanently damaged,” said Waleed, “one of the thousands of Palestinians treated at the TSPs”, according to the WHO.

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