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Source: World Health Organization (WHO)
19 April 2009

Health Action in Crises
Highlights No 254 - 13 - 19 April 2009

Each week, the World Health Organization Department for Health Action in Crises in Geneva produces information highlights on the health aspects of selected humanitarian crises. Drawing on the various WHO programmes, contributions cover activities from field and country offices and the support provided by WHO regional offices and Headquarters. The mandate of the WHO Departments specifically concerned with Emergency and Humanitarian Action in Crises is to increase the effectiveness of the WHO contribution to crisis preparedness and response, transition and recovery. This note, which is not exhaustive, is designed for internal use and does not reflect any official position of the WHO Secretariat.


Assessments and Events
• The unilateral ceasefires that brought Israel’s military offensive in Gaza to an end remain fragile, with small-scale incidents occurring almost daily (OCHA).
• Access to specialized medical treatment outside Gaza has deteriorated dramatically and all MoH referrals out of Gaza have been halted, affecting many patients with serious and complicated conditions.
• A new UNFPA survey examining living conditions in Gaza during the conflict reveals that four in ten pregnant women who needed pre- or post-natal care during the crisis were unable to receive such services.

• WHO and the HC have working with the relevant parties to resolve the issue of patient referrals out of Gaza.
• WHO finalized the analysis of the first round of nutritional data on school children collected through the nutritional surveillance system in public and UNRWA schools.
• WHO and HelpAge are discussing options for training physicians and nurses on the treatment and follow up of elderly chronically ill patients.
• WHO distributed copies of the Neonatal management protocol to neonatal units.


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