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Update from Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem on Al Ahli Hospital, Gaza

Jerusalem: Tuesday, 20 January 2009. Update from the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem on Al Ahli Hospital, Gaza City
“We are exhausted, but we must begin to resume normal operations at Al Ahli Hospital. We must continue the services that the people of Gaza expect of Al Ahli. We cannot rest yet.”

Health Care Department, The Episcopal/Anglican Diocese of Jerusalem

Jerusalem Tuesday, 20 January 2009. Update from the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem on Al Ahli Hospital, Gaza City

“We are exhausted, but we must begin to resume normal operations at Al Ahli Hospital. We must continue the services that the people of Gaza expect of Al Ahli. We cannot rest yet.”
With these incredibly unselfish words, Al Ahli Hospital Director, Suhaila Tarrazi, described her work in the first days of ceasefire in Gaza. Ms. Tarrazi states that the cessation of  military operations and activity is a tremendous relief from the recent “nightmare” but that in fact the hospital’s work remains very busy. Since the ceasefire began, the hospital has actually seen a slight increase in the numbers of patients because many who were afraid or unable to come to the hospital before are now able to come to receive care.
Bishop Suheil Dawani expresses the feelings of the entire diocesan family in praising the Al Ahli Director and Hospital staff for their heroism under exceptional circumstances. Many braved personal danger in travelling to and from the hospital during the conflict. Bishop Suheil stated, “You have demonstrated through healing servanthood and tireless teamwork and ministry, not only the depth of your personal faith, but a faithfulness that has lit a living torch inspiring many across this world with your exemplary devotion and disciplined sense of duty.”
Bishop Suheil continued, “With the ceasefire, some of the hospital’s workload is now able to be shared. The segmentation of the Gaza Strip has eased so that staff from the southern areas of the Gaza Strip  have been able to reach the hospital in Gaza City”.
Beginning tomorrow, staff members who have worked non-stop for 3 weeks will have their first days off to be with their families. In addition to a hospital staff restored to near full strength, physicians from several countries have been able to come and help the exhausted Ahli staff physicians.  Five Egyptian physicians assisted the hospital for one week, and they will be replaced with 3-4 physicians from Jordan. Later, physicians from Turkey are also expected when the Jordanians leave.  These doctors, mostly surgeons, have been of invaluable assistance, but the hospital also badly needs the help of extra nurses.
With the ceasefire in place, more aid is coming to the hospital from governmental and non-governmental agencies, as the Diocese continues to work with partners in providing the necessary essentials in medical and material needs for the hospital.
Director Tarrazi states that much effort and time will be needed “to restore conditions to normal” at the hospital and in Gaza. The hospital began this process almost immediately when it admitted patients for elective (i.e., non-emergency) surgeries for the first time since the conflict started. Al Ahli will also resume its Medical Mission program beginning with patients from Zaytoun, an area particularly hard hit by the conflict. In this program, Al Ahli brings patients to the hospital for all needed medical, social, and rehabilitative services, provides them with milk and high-nutrition food biscuits, and then returns them to their homes.
To continue its role as a vital part of the Gaza healthcare community, Al Ahli will also resume its programs for elderly women and for mammography screening, in addition to the programs now required for children with burns and rehabilitative and other services needed for injured patients.
During this recovery period, all programs and medicines at the hospital will be provided to all patients at no charge. In offering these generous services, despite its own deficits, Al Ahli Hospital affirms its mission of care for all and its commitment to its neighbors and friends in Gaza.
Bishop Suheil cautions that “In the weeks and months ahead, the needs of Al Ahli will be great, and equally challenging and demanding as the past few weeks as it continues to respond to a suffering and devastated community”.  
For those wishing to help the Diocese in its emergency and ongoing support for Al Ahli Hospital with a monetary gift, kindly send a check marked “Preference Gaza Medical Emergency Diocese of Jerusalem” to either
2016-10-24T07:27:30+00:00 January 20th, 2009|Categories: News|