Three operating rooms, but few resources
“Al-Shifa hospital is still standing, but it is badly damaged and barely functional. In the corridors, the false ceilings have been ripped open, and we have seen IV bags [to provide patients with drugs intravenously] hanging directly on the walls of the hospital, for lack of anything better.
“The medical teams on site managed to get the emergency room up and running, but it is largely occupied by patients who have been admitted. The rest of the hospital is filled with displaced people seeking safety.
“The health personnel manage to receive and triage the injured and stabilise them, but they are then a little stuck, because there is a severe shortage of hospital beds. Doctors have a resuscitation space, where people in life-threatening, critical condition can be treated. Patients here either have a chronic illness, or, most often, have been injured by a bullet or in an explosion. During our visit, we regularly heard explosions not far from the hospital.
“The team at the hospital, made up of many volunteers, including two from MSF, managed to set up three operating rooms for urgent surgeries. We understood medical staff want to reopen the intensive care unit. Right now, they have no way to properly monitor the patients they manage to operate on.