Welcome!

News Feed Item

Millions of Children's Lives at Risk in Collapse of Syrian Health System

WESTPORT, Conn., March 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Syria's shattered health system is forcing health workers to engage in brutal medical practices, and a series of epidemics have left millions of children exposed to a plethora of deadly diseases, Save the Children says in a new report.   

Dina *, left, lives in a caravan in Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan with her husband and three children, ages 3, 2 and 18-months old. Her husband buys vegetables and sells them on to their neighbors. The family also dries flat bread in the sun and sells the hardened crumbs to farmers as bird food (* name changed to protect identity). Rosie Thompson/Save the Children.

The report, "A Devastating Toll: the Impact of Three Years of War on the Health of Syria's Children," sheds light on a broken health system and its consequences: children not just dying from violent means, but from diseases that would previously either have been treatable or prevented.  

The extent of the health system collapse in Syria is borne out in many horrific ways, including:

  • Children having limbs amputated because clinics don't have necessary equipment for appropriate treatment
  • Newborn babies dying in their incubators during power cuts
  • Patients being knocked out with metal bars, owing to a lack of anesthesia
  • Patients undergoing potentially deadly person-to-person blood transfusions

"This humanitarian crisis has fast become a health crisis," Save the Children's Regional Director Roger Hearn said. "Children inside are enduring barbaric conditions. Simply finding a doctor is a matter of luck; finding one with the necessary equipment and medication to provide proper treatment has become almost impossible. The desperate measures to which medical personnel are resorting to to keep children alive are increasingly harrowing."

One doctor working inside Syria told Save the Children: "Every day we have injured children suffering from critical burns and fractures. They need to have complicated operations, but in this small hospital, we don't have the capacity. In some cases, we have to cut their limbs off to try to save their lives – because if we don't they will bleed to death."

Among the most worrying trends is the re-emergence of deadly and disfiguring diseases such as polio and measles, which can permanently maim, paralyze and even kill. Up to 80,000 children are likely to be infected by polio's most aggressive form, and are silently spreading the disease.

The majority of illnesses affecting children right now inside Syria are treatable and mostly preventable within a functioning health system. Those diseases include measles, diarrhea, and respiratory illnesses, all among the most deadly diseases worldwide for children aged under five. As one measure of how far Syria's health systems have fallen, in 2010, a total of 26 measles cases were reported in the whole of Syria for the entire year. In the first week of 2014, just in children aged under five, 84 cases were recorded in northern Syria alone.

Two hundred thousand Syrians have died of treatable chronic diseases such as cancer, asthma and diabetes – double the number killed by violence. It is probable that many thousands of these were children. No longer able to buy medication or access regular medical care, everyday conditions are now fatal.

Across Syria, 60 percent of hospitals are damaged or destroyed. Nearly half of Syria's doctors have fled the country: in Aleppo, a city which should have 2,500 doctors, only 36 remain. Of the country's ambulances, 93 percent have been damaged, stolen or destroyed, while many health workers and medical staff have been killed, imprisoned, or have fled the country altogether.

Save the Children calls for the United Nations Security Council's unanimous resolution on humanitarian access to be implemented immediately, and for children and their families to be given access now to vaccines, food, water, medicines and other life-saving assistance, wherever it is needed.

Hearn said: "The international community is failing Syria's children, as they are injured and wounded and are unable to access treatment, as they contract polio and other preventable diseases that kill and disfigure them, and as they suffer and die from not being able to get the right medicine. World leaders must stand up for the smallest victims of this conflict and send a clear message that their suffering and deaths will no longer be tolerated."

To learn more about how Save the Children is working to help Syrian refugee children and how to help, visit SavetheChildren.org

Save the Children is the leading, independent organization that creates lasting change for children in need in the United States and around the world. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Media Contact: Francine Uenuma, 202-450-9153

A young Syrian boy surveys the almost-empty shelves in his father’s pharmacy in Syria. Sam Tarling/Save The Children.

Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140309/MM78933-a
Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140309/MM78933-b
PDF - http://origin-qps.onstreammedia.com/origin/multivu_archive/PRNA/ENR/MM78933-Save-the-Children_A-Devastating-Toll.pdf

SOURCE Save the Children

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events has announced today that Roger Strukhoff has been named conference chair of Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo 2017 New York. The 20th Cloud Expo and 7th @ThingsExpo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "The Internet of Things brings trillions of dollars of opportunity to developers and enterprise IT, no matter how you measure it," stated Roger Strukhoff. "More importantly, it leverages the power of devices and the Internet to enable us all to im...
Everyone knows that truly innovative companies learn as they go along, pushing boundaries in response to market changes and demands. What's more of a mystery is how to balance innovation on a fresh platform built from scratch with the legacy tech stack, product suite and customers that continue to serve as the business' foundation. In his General Session at 19th Cloud Expo, Michael Chambliss, Head of Engineering at ReadyTalk, discussed why and how ReadyTalk diverted from healthy revenue and mor...
Information technology is an industry that has always experienced change, and the dramatic change sweeping across the industry today could not be truthfully described as the first time we've seen such widespread change impacting customer investments. However, the rate of the change, and the potential outcomes from today's digital transformation has the distinct potential to separate the industry into two camps: Organizations that see the change coming, embrace it, and successful leverage it; and...
The 20th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Containers, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal ...
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
20th Cloud Expo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy.
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann returns to 'DevOps at Cloud Expo 2017' as Conference Chair The @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "DevOps is set to be one of the most profound disruptions to hit IT in decades," said Andi Mann. "It is a natural extension of cloud computing, and I have seen both firsthand and in independent research the fantastic results DevOps delivers. So I am excited to help the great t...
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
Internet of @ThingsExpo has announced today that Chris Matthieu has been named tech chair of Internet of @ThingsExpo 2017 New York The 7th Internet of @ThingsExpo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York. Chris Matthieu is the co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, a revolutionary real-time IoT platform recently acquired by Citrix. Octoblu connects things, systems, people and clouds to a global mesh network allowing users to automate and control design flo...
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, discussed the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They also reviewed two "free infrastructure" pr...
Financial Technology has become a topic of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York, June 6-8, 2017, will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech.
Get deep visibility into the performance of your databases and expert advice for performance optimization and tuning. You can't get application performance without database performance. Give everyone on the team a comprehensive view of how every aspect of the system affects performance across SQL database operations, host server and OS, virtualization resources and storage I/O. Quickly find bottlenecks and troubleshoot complex problems.
"Dice has been around for the last 20 years. We have been helping tech professionals find new jobs and career opportunities," explained Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
An IoT product’s log files speak volumes about what’s happening with your products in the field, pinpointing current and potential issues, and enabling you to predict failures and save millions of dollars in inventory. But until recently, no one knew how to listen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dan Gettens, Chief Research Officer at OnProcess, discussed recent research by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and OnProcess Technology, where MIT created a new, breakthrough analytics model for ...
Rapid innovation, changing business landscapes, and new IT demands force businesses to make changes quickly. In the eyes of many, containers are at the brink of becoming a pervasive technology in enterprise IT to accelerate application delivery. In this presentation, attendees learned about the: The transformation of IT to a DevOps, microservices, and container-based architecture What are containers and how DevOps practices can operate in a container-based environment A demonstration of how ...