Dr Sohaib Safi sur le site de l'ancienne tour résidentielle Al Shuruk dans le centre de la ville de Gaza, démolie par une frappe aérienne israélienne lors de l'escalade de mai 2021. © Pierre Fromentin/MSF
War Gaza-IsraelTestimonies

MSF presents a short documentary on the evolution of healthcare in Gaza before and after 7 October 2023

On Friday, June 7, 2024

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On 6 October 2023, MSF was carrying out humanitarian medical activities in the Gaza Strip in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. On that day, our colleagues were treating Gazan patients injured by so-called ‘butterfly bullets’, fired by Israeli snipers at demonstrators in the days and weeks leading up to the war that engulfed the region on 7 October. We also treated 87 patients for long-term injuries (from an initial cohort of nearly 900 patients), sustained during the escalation of the Great March of Return in 2018 and 2019.

This documentary was filmed in May 2023. It illustrates some of the challenges that existed prior to the full-scale war that began on 7 October, including the difficulties faced by healthcare professionals and hospitals due to the Israeli blockade of Gaza, which makes it extremely difficult to import essential medical items, such as C-arms (mobile X-ray machines, essential for orthopaedic surgery).

However, it also illustrates the fact that prior to October, Gaza had a robust and functional healthcare system, including advanced surgical care, research and antimicrobial resistance management. 

Today, that healthcare system no longer exists, having been systematically dismantled by bombardments, fighting, murders, abuses and arrests of healthcare professionals and patients.

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