Gaza care centers on verge of closure: Health Ministry

By Hidayah al-Saidi

GAZA CITY, Palestine (AA) – Gaza’s Health Ministry has warned that ministry-run primary healthcare centers are on the verge of halting their services due to severe medicine shortages.

"These shortages threaten health services provided to the public through primary-care centers," Maher Shamiyya, director-general of the ministry's primary healthcare department, said at a press conference held in Gaza City on Monday.

"Primary healthcare services are now at risk as a result of the acute lack of essential drugs," he added.

He went on to point out that at least 100 basic drug types — out of 143 — were “no longer available”.

Gaza’s Health Ministry suffers from a severe shortage of medicine and medical equipment due to a crippling Israeli blockade on the enclave imposed since 2007.

Home to two million people, the Gaza Strip has a total of 13 ministry-run hospitals and 54 primary healthcare centers, which account for roughly 95 percent of all health services in the territory.