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Salaries totalling $30,000 for five laboratory technicians are needed. The fact is, laboratory services will stop in January if the salaries are not subsidized.

The Centers have always provided free medicines to children up to six years of age. There are 56,680 children registered, with more than 2,500 added each year. Half the annual cost of these medicines at $37,500 is requested.

Sanitation project: $30,000. For the past 10 years the authorities have prohibited garbage collection and sewage infrastructure. Minimal work has been done in disposal works resulting in uncoordinated efforts and waste.

Private persons may now connect main sewage lines, provided they can afford to do so. The NECC proposes to supervise the Gaza Rehabilitation Committee’s work to connect 40 homes to the sewage mains.

This project would begin to address the horrid sanitary conditions that affect the health of Gazans, especially of children who play in the raw sewage.

Gaza Central Blood Bank: Operational support: $16,000; empty blood bags: $20,000. The Gaza Central Blood Bank has the only donation service in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. It cares for 55 hemophiliac children and provides 70 percent of all pregnant women with blood before delivery. Continued operational support is needed.

Empty blood bags are expensive, about $3.50 each. The hospitals have offered to supply used bags, which would then have to be sterilized. This is not acceptable.

Rafah and Jabalya mobile dental clinics: Operational support: $30,000. The clinic in Rafah, a region in southern Gaza, serves more than 60,000 people. Rafah is one of the most underdeveloped areas in the Gaza Strip and in serious need of health care services.

The mobile clinic in Jabalya provides care in the northern camps for another 60,000 people. The most important component of the clinic provides educational materials on dental hygiene with free examinations to children in kindergarten.

Gaza Rehabilitation Committee: Medical supplies: $18,000; hearing aids: $12,000. The Committee was established in 1991 by eight institutions to coordinate the groups serving the disabled. In cooperation with Bethlehem University, the Committee has trained 16 community-based rehabilitation workers. These workers and their supervisors conducted a house-to-house survey in two camps and a village (total population: 80,000) to assess the number of disabled and to evaluate their needs. There are about 3,500 hearing-impaired children and hundreds of young men with spinal cord injuries.

Along with physiotherapy and family counseling, vocational training is offered.

Conclusion: Recently the Israeli housing minister was quoted saying that “preventing Palestinians in the Occupied Territories from entering Israel will be a permanent measure.” With such closures the difficulties and hardships can only increase and the ability of Palestinians to address their medical needs, decrease.

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Tags: Gaza Strip/West Bank Health Care Poor/Poverty Funding Occupied Territories