Giving People with Special Physical Needs in Gaza Dignity in Their Healthcare
Anera provides urine bags for people with special physical needs in Gaza.
Anera has partnered with the Physically Handicapped Society (PHS) in Gaza for more than ten years. It is the only society serving the physically handicapped in Gaza. They reach 14,000 patients, with an average of 2,000 visiting the society’s facilities every month.
For many of the society’s handicapped patients, a priority need is urine bags, especially for those suffering from spinal cord injuries and cerebral palsy. PHS estimates between 1,000 and 2,000 patients sometimes need urine bags.
Dr. Mustafa Abdel-Wahab explains, "In the past, the ministry of health provided them. But today, with the financial difficulties the ministry suffers, due to the ongoing blockade, they have stopped delivering them to us."
Urine bags are generally for use only once to avoid infections. Dr Mustafa says the lack of urine bags has exacerbated health problems for patients who have to wash and reuse the few they have. That means they are not properly sterilised to prevent contamination.
The bags came in a shipment of donated medicines and healthcare supplies from Anera’s medical donations partner, CMMB. “This shipment will solve many problems for patients and ensure that they’re not exposed to infections." says Dr. Mustafa.
The availability of urine bags will contribute to the health of people with disabilities, benefiting their lifestyle, both physical and psychological. The bags will also provide a sense of dignity as they meet their health challenges.
Patients need one or two bags per day but it is difficult for them to cover the cost. The scarcity of urine bags also weighed heavily on them. “Patients need at least 30 bags a month,” Dr. Mustafa says, “But we could only provide about 15 bags a month because of the lack of supplies.”
"Thanks to Anera’s generosity and continuing support,” he says, “we are able to stock the urine bags and other medical supplies like medical gauze, bandages and sterilisers for people with disabilities. These are all items that should just automatically be part of medical protocol."