(CTN News) – According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the emergency department at Al-Shifa Hospital in northern Gaza, which has been severely damaged by Israel’s bombardments, is in a dire state.
The WHO described it as a “bloodbath” and emphasized the urgent need for resuscitation. On Saturday, a team from the WHO and other United Nations (UN) agencies managed to deliver medical supplies to the hospital, which is the largest in the Palestinian territory.
The WHO stated that tens of thousands of Gaza-displaced people are seeking shelter in the hospital building and grounds, leading to a severe shortage of drinking water and food.
The team reported that the emergency department is overwhelmed with hundreds of injured patients, with new arrivals every minute. Disturbingly, trauma patients are being treated on the floor without any pain management available.
Due to a lack of oxygen and supplies, the operating theatres are not operational, and critical patients are being transferred to Al-Ahli Arab Hospital for surgeries. The WHO team concluded that the hospital is in desperate need of resuscitation.
Only a limited number of 30 patients can receive dialysis daily. The health infrastructure in the Gaza strip has suffered significant damage due to the Israeli army’s bombardments and ground operations following the attack by Hamas on Israeli territory.
The Israeli authorities report that approximately 1,140 people were killed and 240 hostages were taken during the attack.
However, Gaza’s health ministry claims that Israel’s retaliatory offensive has resulted in the deaths of 18,800 people, predominantly women and children.
Israel has accused Hamas of operating a command center beneath the hospital, despite denials from hospital officials and the Palestinian group. The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced plans to strengthen Al-Shifa hospital in the coming weeks to restore basic services.
They state that up to 20 operating theaters and post-operative care services can be activated with regular supplies of fuel, oxygen, medicines, food, and water, along with the necessary staff.
Currently, Al-Ahli Arab is the only partially functioning hospital in the northern Gaza Strip, while three other hospitals are operating at a minimum capacity. Before the war, there were 24 operational healthcare facilities. The Kamal Adwan hospital has also raised concerns by the WHO.
Hamas has accused Israel of carrying out a horrific massacre at the hospital, alleging that Israeli forces fired at patient rooms, arrested staff, and destroyed tents of displaced people with bulldozers.