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Gaza: Inside the specialist surgical unit rebuilding lives after gunshots

02 Dec 21 | 06 Dec 21

Warning: This video contains graphic content

Gaza: Inside the specialist surgical unit rebuilding lives after gunshots

In Gaza, thousands of people were shot mostly in the legs  by the Israeli army during the 2018-19 border protests known as the Great March of Return.

After the initial emergency, this drove an acute medical crisis with large numbers of gunshot patients suffering from catastrophic injuries that required advanced treatment.

To respond to this, in May 2018 MSF opened a specialised limb reconstruction unit at Al-Awda Hospital in the north of Gaza.

Today, the team here continues to deliver expert treatment for these kinds of horrific and complex wounds.

MSF’s approach is holistic, and our services include surgery and post-operative care, treatment for bone infections, physiotherapy and mental health counselling for patients.

The aim is to help patients through what can be a long and painful treatment process, providing support for them as well as the loved ones by their side.

At MSF's out-patient department in Batil refugee camp Gandhi Pant, a nurse, escorts a patient with a possible appendicitis to a waiting ambulance. 

Batil is one of three camps in South Sudan’s Upper Nile State sheltering at least 113,000 refugees who have crossed the border from Blue Nile state to escape fighting between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the SPLM-North armed group. Refugees arrive at the camp with harrowing stories of being bombed out of their homes, or having their villages burned. The camps into which they have poured are on a vast floodplain, leaving many tents flooded and refugees vulnerable to disease. Mortality rates in Batil camp are at emergency levels, malnutrition rates are more than five times above emergency thresholds, and diarrhea and malarial cases are rising.

Help us prepare for the next emergency

MSF in Occupied Palestinian Territories

Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) first worked in Palestine in 1989.

Today, we provide medical and psychological assistance to people affected by the ongoing conflict, continuing our long-running mental health programmes on the West Bank and support to burns and trauma victims in the Gaza Strip.