Immigration of doctors | Deir Ezzor suffer form deteriorating health conditions and alarming prevalence of diseases • The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights
The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

Immigration of doctors | Deir Ezzor suffer form deteriorating health conditions and alarming prevalence of diseases

Medical sector in Deir Ezzor city, as well as all sectors in regime-controlled areas, is deteriorating greatly because of the considerable damage of infrastructure and the demolition of many public health facilities, such as dispensaries and hospitals, which sustained significant destruction during the war against ISIS since 2014. Hajin and Abu Hamam hospitals were among those hospitals which were sustained considerable destruction and have been put out of service until they were rehabilitated and opened by the Autonomous Administration in early 2022. However, the hospitals’ capability remain poor. Recently, Al-Kesrah hospital has been rehabilitated.


Many factors have negatively impacted the medical sector, including the immigration of doctors and medics because of the deteriorating security situation, especially with the escalating attacks by ISIS cells, lack of support poor living and social conditions; this, in turn, has led to the currently small number of medical specialists and highly qualified personnel.


Speaking to SOHR, the vice president of the health committee of Deir Ezzor civil council, Mohamed Al-Salem, commented on the shortage of equipment and supplies needed in health institutions, as well as the lack of highly-qualified medics and specialists. The man says “there are no surgeons who specialise in vascular surgeries in Deir Ezzor. Accordingly, people with gunshot injuries and some critical cases are transported to hospitals in Al-Raqqah and Al-Hasakah; this, in turn, shoulder those people extra burden.”


“Since the latest appeals by Deir Ezzor residents to improve the health situation and provide services to hospitals, the Autonomous Administration has worked on securing some services, including providing Al-Madinah hospital in Al-Ma’amel area with a CT scanner, which has relatively eased off burdens of patients in that area. The health directorate of the Autonomous Administration has to allocate a budget to secure equipment and devices needed for surgeries and treating patients with heart diseases. The area also needs a machine for kidney stone treatment, X-ray machine, upper and lower gastrointestinal endoscopy machines and other machines and devices. Until this moment, the hospital has received no support to resume rehabilitation of the hospital and provide it with the needed equipment.”


It is worth noting that the area lacks medical centres and dispensary, although recommendations by the general health law set by the Autonomous Administration estipulate establishing a dispensary in every area whose population exceeds 5,000 people. Meanwhile, preliminary healthcare is provided in that region, but the provided healthcare remains very poor because that area stretches for 300 km along Deir Ezzor countryside. According to those standards, this region needs at least 35 dispensaries in order to provide proper health and medical care to the region’s inhabitants.


On the other hand, a 50-year-old man known by his initials as N. S. from Al-Hesan village has told SOHR, “the nearest dispensary to the village is Shaqraa dispensary, which is nearly ten kilometres away from the village, but it lacks almost all medical services, including medicines and doctors. Meanwhile, the difficult trip to the dispensary, which costs nearly 40,000 SYP, make patients shoulder extra burdens, especially when it is related to emergency cases. On the other hand, the prices of medical services in private hospitals are very high and unaffordable by the many.”


The deteriorating health situation in such poor communities poses a considerable threat to remote villages which lack the basic standards of healthcare and contributes to spreading diseases, the latest of which is the cholera epidemic in Deir Ezzor. Meanwhile, no solutions have reached to put an end to this crisis in light of the suspension of support provided by the Autonomous Administration and international organisations.