by Nahed Al-Wehaidi
The Situation in Gaza
Gaza has suffered 14 years of blockade. The economic situation is dire, with one of the highest unemployment rates in the world, and the health care system is overstretched. There is a chronic shortage of essential medicines and health care supplies. Hospitals are not well prepared to respond to normal medical emergencies, let alone a pandemic like COVID-19.
As of March 22, the World Health Organization reported two cases of COVID-19 in Gaza. More than 2,000 people are in home quarantine and all those newly entering the area are being quarantined. Yet, Gaza, home to over two million people, currently has only a few hundred testing kits for the virus, and the number of intensive care beds and ventilators number only in the dozens.
In crowded Gaza, social distancing is close to impossible for residents. An outbreak of COVID-19 in the refugee camps or densely populated neighborhoods would overwhelm health care facilities that are already struggling to meet patients’ needs.
Gaza is bracing for worse to come.
Anera’s Gaza staff is working to procure locally and internationally the medical aid needed to hold the coronavirus at bay. We may have to purchase medicines and supplies on the local market, as donations of these items are in high demand globally. Funds for procurement, shipping and distribution will make a big difference in saving lives and slowing down the spread.
Anera is also continuing to supply safe water to hospitals, health clinics and households. We recently completed installation of a desalination system at one of Gaza’s largest hospitals as well as a child and family nutrition center. These modern, efficient systems turn Gaza’s contaminated groundwater into clean water for drinking and use in treating patients.
How you can help
Palestinians in Gaza need your help now. When you make a donation of $25 or more it will be DOUBLED to help rush emergency medical supplies and make clean water available to more patients. Please donate whatever you can. Every dollar will help.
Your help is needed to stave off catastrophe right now. There are now two confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Gaza. Widespread infection would overwhelm an already stretched, inadequate health system. Our team here in Gaza needs your help to provide emergency medical supplies and access to clean water. Can you please donate $25 or more right now? Your gift will be DOUBLED thanks to a generous Anera donor who is matching all gifts up to $10,000.
Other ways you can help after you donate
Follow us on our social media channels to stay up-to-date on our work to respond to COVID-19 and other needs among refugees and other vulnerable communities in Gaza, the West Bank, Lebanon, and Jordan. Please remember to share our social media posts with your family and friends.