By caesarean section

First birth in Gaza field hospital by the Red Cross

14.05.2024 20:00

The Red Cross is tackling the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip. In the middle of the Gaza war, the first baby was born shortly after the opening of a field hospital. Austria has a particularly important role to play here.

There has not been much good news from the Gaza Strip since the terrorist massacre of thousands of Israelis by Hamas and the resulting war in the coastal region. So it is all the more pleasing that the newly opened Red Cross field hospital on the Mediterranean coast near the town of Rafah was able to come up with one: Last weekend, the first baby was delivered there by caesarean section - may this be a good omen for the coming months.

Up to 200 patients per day
"As the Red Cross, we don't differentiate between which party to the conflict someone belongs to," says Andrea Reisinger from the Red Cross in Vienna. "Anyone who is injured or ill and not carrying a weapon has the right to treatment from us." The new field hospital, which specializes in surgery, gynaecology and obstetrics as well as maternity and newborn care, has 60 inpatient beds and an outpatient clinic that can treat up to 200 patients a day.

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  • Austrian Red Cross
  • IBAN: AT57 2011 1400 1440 0144
  • Erste Bank: BLZ: 20 111
  • Reference: Middle East

The Austrian Red Cross is responsible for water treatment in the new field hospital. This is particularly difficult in the Gaza Strip, as the groundwater is not only contaminated but also contains far too much salt, as Red Cross water and hygiene expert Georg Ecker explains. The water pipes are damaged and there is virtually no surface water, according to the expert, who examined the situation on site.

System secures water supply
Special technology is required for these particular conditions, which is very expensive. The corresponding equipment is also difficult to obtain. "We ended up buying the system in Germany for 80,000 euros," says Andrea Reisinger. It is also expensive to operate.

On the outskirts of Rafah, the International Red Cross has set up a field hospital to treat the wounded and sick. (Bild: Rotes Kreuz)
On the outskirts of Rafah, the International Red Cross has set up a field hospital to treat the wounded and sick.

It can treat 500 liters of water per hour to drinking water quality - the equivalent of 12,000 liters per day.

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