Written by Menatalla Ibrahim
As COVID-19 cases continue to take a toll on Yemen’s already strained humanitarian conditions, Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) has continued its efforts to support local health professionals in the war-torn country.
Qatar’s Red Crescent Society delivered aid to Yemen’s embattled Taiz city on Tuesday, as part of ongoing efforts to provide humanitarian aid to the country.
The organisation distributed protective medical supplies to several hospitals in Yemen, in a bid to assist local health professionals to serve the coronavirus-hit city despite difficult humanitarian conditions.
The move was part of a project launched by QCRS last year that aimed to provide humanitarian intervention across at least three governates, including Sanaa, Taiz and Saada. To date, QCRS has pumped nearly $80,000 into medical equipment and health facilities.
“QRCS played a significant role in providing medical aid to control the Coronavirus outbreak. They procured the Al-Jomhouri Hospital with protective supplies for medical staff of the Coronavirus isolation centre, as well as other departments. We would like to thank them gratefully and urge them to give us more assistance to overcome this pandemic, which has weighed heavily on many already suffering Yemeni people,” Dr. Rajeh Al-Maleeki, Director of the Taiz Health Office said in a statement.
Dr. Ferial Mohamed Ahmed, Head of the Department of Isolation at the Al-Jomhouri Hospital in Taiz said the supplies were vital in the battle to fight the novel coronavirus.
“While assigned as an isolation centre, the Al-Jomhouri Hospital lacks the basic medical resources, including consumables, disinfectants, and detergents,” said Dr. Ahmed said.
“With the previous support, our medical staff could resume their work without fear of infection. Today, we are even more reassured as all the staff of the isolation and other departments are given protective equipment,” she added during a meeting with QRCS’s representative.
Yemen has been devastated by an on-going war since 2015 that has left millions of people without access to health care, food, clean water or proper sanitation — all of which are crucial to prevent the spread of viruses and diseases.
The war has shattered the country’s health system, with many of Yemen’s 3,500 medical facilities damaged or destroyed in Saudi-led coalition airstrikes. According to UN reports, only half of health facilities in the country are fully functioning, leaving it unable to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.
To date, Yemen has recorded a total number of 1,091 cases of Covid-19, including 557 deaths. However, concerns have been raised that the toll could be much higher, with many pointing to Yemen’s lack of transparency in data, both from the Houthi rebels and the internationally-recognised government.
The Qatar Red Crescent launched its humanitarian activities in Yemen in 2012 and has since provided aid for thousands of people suffering from poverty, as well as the drastic effects of war.