The World Health Organization is “extremely concerned” about the state of the Lebanese health sector
CAIRO, September 17 (EFE) – The Director-General of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, expressed “deep concern” today at the impact of the Lebanese economic crisis on health, and announced the dispatch of an international team to the World Health Organization. Assisting the government in developing a strategy for this vital sector.
In a press conference at the conclusion of a two-day visit to Lebanon, the CEO of the World Health Organization expressed concern “over the impact of the current crisis on the health sector” and “the risk of ‘returning’ for decades”.
The economic crisis that erupted at the end of 2019 has sharply worsened in recent months, which has led to a shortage of medicines and medical supplies, as well as a general shortage of fuel to power generators.
After meeting with political leaders in Lebanon, Tedros said he was “encouraged” by their position and “biased” by their positions, because they all understand that this “emergency situation” needs “immediate solutions”.
To help implement the needed reforms, the World Health Organization will send a team of international experts to help the Lebanese authorities identify problems, find solutions and formulate a “strategy,” Tedros said.
He also pledged to do “everything in his power” to help the country and work “closely” with its partners inside and outside the United Nations to “strengthen the Lebanese health system.”
The head of the World Health Organization expressed particular concern about the “brain drain” that the sector is experiencing due to the mass exodus of nurses and doctors due to the economic crisis, a problem whose effects will last “years” and will make it difficult to recover from. . sector.
The agency supports the purchase of medicines for serious and chronic diseases, as the number of beneficiaries reached 450 thousand patients in 2020, but the representative of the World Health Organization in Lebanon, Iman Al-Shankiti, warned at the press conference that they cannot “replace the state” and that their efforts alone are sufficient. “Gaps”.
He explained that the needs are increasing and that despite their talks with donors to expand aid in this area, the efforts are not “sufficient” and the problem requires a “complete government strategy.”
Regarding fuel, Al-Shankiti indicated that the United Nations has a plan in place to supply some hospitals and medical centers within the next two months, but it is again a “patch” while the authorities succeed in addressing the fuel crisis “in two or three months.” EFE
njd / fc / fpa
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