Medical Aid Puts Asthma Patients at Ease in Gaza
A recent Direct Relief donation of asthma medicine is helping to ensure health clinics in Gaza can provide treatment to vulnerable patients.
Abedelminin, 60, is a farmer in Khan Younis, Gaza. Over the years, he became sensitive to the dust and smoke generated by burning garbage from a nearby dump. He was diagnosed with asthma and relied on a local charitable medical clinic for treatment. He has to keep an inhaler in his pocket at all times.
Asthma medication is expensive for patients in poverty-stricken communities. “If I need to get it outside [of the clinic], it would cost me around 50 NIS [$14] and I just can’t afford it,” he says. “My work at the farm barely provides enough for me and my family to survive.”
Even with the treatment, Abedelminim says he still sometimes experiences a shortness of breath.
"Chest pain has awakened me at night many times. I’ve had trouble sleeping from my constant coughing.”
We met him recently at the nearby Pulse of Life Medical Center, after a sleepless night. After examining him, the clinic’s medical team prescribed a new inhaler for him. The clinic had the inhaler in stock thanks to a recent medical donation by Direct Relief, and supplied to the clinic by Anera.
The inhaler delivers the medication mometasone, which eases the chest tightness, wheezing, and coughing caused by asthma. Anera’s partner clinics and hospitals in Gaza provide these inhalers to patients free-of-charge.
Abedelminin has tried not to leave home when he can help it, since the pandemic began. Given his age and health condition, he has several risk factors. Even catching a cold or the flu can take a huge toll on him.
“Being able to get my medicine and proper care at a clinic close to home has really removed a major worry for me,” he says.
The medical shipment, generously donated by Direct Relief, included anticonvulsant medication and corticosteroid aerosol inhalers, which Anera distributed to six clinics and hospitals across Gaza.