Gaza health ministry devises ‘emergency plan’ to counter Israeli provocations 27Mar11 March 28, 2011

The Palestinian Information Centre -  27 March 2011

The Gaza Health Ministry has developed an emergency plan should Israel ”provoke” the Palestinians, Dr. Mohammed al-Kashif, the ministry’s international coordination director has said.

He was hosted on the government television show ”Meeting with an Official” on Sunday alongside the health ministry’s pharmaceutical director Muneer al-Barsh.

The current drug shortage in the Gaza Strip has affected leukemia patients and those suffering ailments in the kidneys, nerves, hearts and much more, Kashif explained.

”We’ve addressed many countries to intervene and bring to Gaza its share of medicine in appropriate quantity according to specific needs. We have called upon international organizations, including the World Health Organization and 23 others to help isolate the medical crisis from political wrangling and the internal situation,” he said.

There are two methods Gaza uses to fill the medical gap: by periodically taking bids in the West Bank and by receiving donations from around the world, the health ministry’s pharmaceutical director Bursh said.

He added that the Health Ministry in the seperately governed West Bank does not provide the Strip its alloted share medical supplies according to previous agreements.

He went on to say that over the last four years, the health ministry has had a monthly deficit of around 100-150 basic medicines.

Barsh also said that at times the ministry receives too much of one kind of medicine. ”For example, we get 5 million aspirin tablets a year while we only need two million.”

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