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 announced today that SoftLayer, an IBM Company, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York, New York. SoftLayer, an IBM Company, provides cloud infrastructure as a service from a growing number of data centers and network points of presence around the world. SoftLayer’s customers range from Web startups to global enterprises.
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership abi...
The essence of cloud computing is that all consumable IT resources are delivered as services. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Yung Chou, Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, demonstrated the concepts and implementations of two important cloud computing deliveries: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). He discussed from business and technical viewpoints what exactly they are, why we care, how they are different and in what ways, and the strategies for IT to transi...
After more than five years of DevOps, definitions are evolving, boundaries are expanding, ‘unicorns’ are no longer rare, enterprises are on board, and pundits are moving on. Can we now look at an evolution of DevOps? Should we? Is the foundation of DevOps ‘done’, or is there still too much left to do? What is mature, and what is still missing? What does the next 5 years of DevOps look like? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by DevOps Summit Conference Chair Andi Mann, panelists l...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the work...
Keeping pace with advancements in software delivery processes and tooling is taxing even for the most proficient organizations. Point tools, platforms, open source and the increasing adoption of private and public cloud services requires strong engineering rigor - all in the face of developer demands to use the tools of choice. As Agile has settled in as a mainstream practice, now DevOps has emerged as the next wave to improve software delivery speed and output. To make DevOps work, organization...
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.
What sort of WebRTC based applications can we expect to see over the next year and beyond? One way to predict development trends is to see what sorts of applications startups are building. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Arin Sime, founder of WebRTC.ventures, will discuss the current and likely future trends in WebRTC application development based on real requests for custom applications from real customers, as well as other public sources of information,
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 20th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 add...
Historically, some banking activities such as trading have been relying heavily on analytics and cutting edge algorithmic tools. The coming of age of powerful data analytics solutions combined with the development of intelligent algorithms have created new opportunities for financial institutions. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sebastien Meunier, Head of Digital for North America at Chappuis Halder & Co., will discuss how these tools can be leveraged to develop a lasting competitive advanta...
TechTarget storage websites are the best online information resource for news, tips and expert advice for the storage, backup and disaster recovery markets. By creating abundant, high-quality editorial content across more than 140 highly targeted technology-specific websites, TechTarget attracts and nurtures communities of technology buyers researching their companies' information technology needs. By understanding these buyers' content consumption behaviors, TechTarget creates the purchase inte...
With the introduction of IoT and Smart Living in every aspect of our lives, one question has become relevant: What are the security implications? To answer this, first we have to look and explore the security models of the technologies that IoT is founded upon. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nevi Kaja, a Research Engineer at Ford Motor Company, will discuss some of the security challenges of the IoT infrastructure and relate how these aspects impact Smart Living. The material will be delivered i...
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Lachapelle, CEO of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), will provide an overview of various initiatives to certifiy the security of connected devices and future trends in ensuring public trust of IoT. Eric Lachapelle is the Chief Executive Officer of the Professional Evaluation and Certification Board (PECB), an international certification body. His role is to help companies and individuals to achieve professional, accredited and worldw...
My team embarked on building a data lake for our sales and marketing data to better understand customer journeys. This required building a hybrid data pipeline to connect our cloud CRM with the new Hadoop Data Lake. One challenge is that IT was not in a position to provide support until we proved value and marketing did not have the experience, so we embarked on the journey ourselves within the product marketing team for our line of business within Progress. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Sum...