In the midst of protracted conflict and an ongoing humanitarian crisis, Syria is now facing an unprecedented surge in COVID-19 cases. Due to the spread of the highly infectious Delta variant, SAMS-supported ICUs are filled to capacity, challenging Syria’s already fragile healthcare system.
Ibrahim Aboud, manager of SAMS-supported al-Ziraa Hospital in Idlib described a dire situation: “On average, a patient spends 15 days in the ICU. All beds are occupied, and the moment we discharge a patient, we immediately admit someone else. Yet the number of cases continues to increase, and we are under severe pressure.”
As cold winter conditions approach, the further spread of COVID-19 could be catastrophic, especially in northwest Syria, where nearly 3 million displaced people have limited access to food, water, shelter, and sanitation. After more than a decade of conflict, Syria’s healthcare system lacks critical medical equipment, medications, and supplies, including oxygen and oxygen generating equipment, which are critical tools in the fight against COVID-19.
Since the onset of the pandemic, SAMS has played a leading role in the health system’s response, establishing 5 COVID-19 hospital-based Isolation and treatment units in Syria. SAMS is also supporting frontline healthcare workers via telemedicine and training, coordinating with the WHO and local partners, improving preparedness and surveillance, distributing medicine, PPE, medical supplies, and equipment, including oxygen to healthcare facilities, implementing community awareness campaigns, participating in the Syria Immunization Group Team and advocating for and supporting the vaccination of healthcare workers and civilians against COVID-19.
Here is a summary of SAMS’ COVID-19 response in Syria:
● Supporting 5 COVID-19 hospital-based Isolation and treatment units, including 4 for adults and 1 for children, with capacity to admit and manage up to 270 patients;
● Delivering life-saving COVID-19 care and other medical services, free of charge to patients in need;
● Operating triage and screening units at of healthcare facilities;
● Distributing medicine, PPE, medical supplies, and equipment, including oxygen to healthcare facilities;
● Supporting frontline COVID-19 healthcare workers via telemedicine and training;
● Participating in the Syria Immunization Group, advocating for and supporting the vaccination of healthcare workers and civilians against COVID-19;
● Implementing community awareness campaigns to stop the spread of the virus, while also delivering care to displaced individuals via mobile medical clinics;
● Continuing to deliver an average of 150,000 consultations per month at 35 healthcare facilities in northern Syria, free of charge to every patient in need.
We need your support now more than ever to ensure that conflict-impacted populations receive urgently needed medical services, including COVID-19 care. To help save lives and support underserved communities, it is absolutely essential that we increase both our resources and capacity for generating oxygen, while also securing other critical medications, supplies, equipment, and personnel.
Please support patients who have endured a decade of conflict and are now struggling to persevere through the pandemic.Support SAMS' Efforts