OUR HOSPITALS AND MEDICAL FACILITIES IN SYRIA
We have an experienced medical team in Syria with a focus on disaster management, emergency and intensive care. Our hospitals aim to provide free care to the poorest and most vulnerable as 85% of the Syrian population are living in poverty now. Our medical teams are all Syrian.
We aim to eliminate UK overheads completely as we are keen to channel financial donations to cover the running costs of these life-saving hospitals. All our work in the UK is carried out by volunteers and we cover our own expenses. In a country with such high poverty levels, we are keen to support our medical teams and aim to pay them a subsistence wage where possible, although some specialists will require a market-rate salary. We also have to cover the monthly costs of medications, supplies, food and water as well as providing fuel for our ambulances and generators.
Our greatest need is for financial support that is given on a monthly basis as this enables us to cover the resourcing costs of each hospital each month. If you would like to support our medical teams in Syria, please download a giving form below.
Each of our hospitals is focused on providing critical care: emergency, ICU and surgical care, and some may also offer obstetric, pediatric or other specialist services.
al hayat hospital, aleppo*
We opened Al Hayat hospital on 1st May May 2017. A former maternity and obstetric hospital that had closed because of lack of resources and funding. We reopened it as a hospital providing emergency medical care and retain some of the staff specialising in obstetrics.
Because of the constantly changing environment in Syria, and the challenges we have had in finding appropriate buildings at a low or no rent, we have started converting the empty shipping containers that we use to send aid into Syria, into "Meditainers".
We fit these out and equip them to a high standard so they are fit for purpose and are easy to keep clean and sterile. The benefit of these is that we own them, and if we need to, we can move them from one place to another. Each one offers a small ICU, operating room and assessment area.
LEMUEL MOBILE OPERATING ROOM*
The inspiration for our first Mobile OR came when Dr A lost one of his hospitals in May 2016. The fighting got closer and closer and over a number of days and weeks his concern over losing this hospital became greater. One night, the medical team had to abandon the hospital. It was a scary and difficult night for the team who managed to evacuate the patients and get out safely, but in the panic one of the doctors broke his leg and the staff then got lost in the desert and a team had to be sent out to rescue them.
One of the challenges with providing emergency medical care in war zones is that if your hospital and team are safe, then you won’t be close enough to the fighting to be able to provide urgent care for the people who need it immediately. Equally, if you are too close to the conflict then the whole team, patients and hospital itself are in great danger.
Having a mobile unit enables us to move the key part of the hospital to the place it is needed most. This means that it could be used alongside a smaller clinic, to help set up a new hospital or to provide additional support to an existing hospital receiving high volumes of traumas. This will initially be working with Emmanuel Hospital.
This is in an area that did not have any medical provision for a population of around 50,000. There is a great deal of conflict in the areas surrounding this hospital. Although it is closer to a main hospital than others, we are opened this for a number of reasons.
Access to this area is via a very dangerous road exposed to frequent attacks from armed groups. For this reason no emergency services will attend this area after dark and the people resident in this area would be unable to access medical care if they attempted to do this journey at night.
This area also has a team of doctors and nurses who are working at this hospital on a voluntary so the running costs will be minimal for us. We are using our mobile operating room at Emmanuel Hospital at the moment.
Our first hospital opened in May 2016 in the desert. We opened this in an area where all the hospitals were destroyed leaving a vulnerable population in an area surrounded by conflict. The need for emergency care is great. The nearest hospital with an emergency department is at least two hours drive, and Meljar was serving other areas which are even further from a hospital. Too many lives are lost on long journeys to hospitals simply because of the distance and time it takes to reach them. We have just reopened Meljar Hospital after having to suspend its services for a few months when ISIS took the area.
* The names of our hospitals have been changed for the protection and security of our medical teams as well as the hospitals. Hospitals are actively targeted and destroyed in Syria, and medical professionals are regularly kidnapped, ransomed and killed. We aim to raise awareness for our projects while keeping them low profile and not disclosing any defining details about them or their locations.