WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and the organization’s regional director for the Eastern Mediterranean, Ahmed Al Mandhari, expressed their sympathy and continued support in a joint statement at the end of a two-day visit.
‘Since the blast in the port of Beirut, the country and its people have plunged further into despair with a noticeable increase in poverty,’ they said.
Tedros and Mandhari warned that due to the shortage of fuel, hospitals are only operating at 50 percent of their capacity, while there is also a notorious lack of basic medicines due to the lack of foreign currency to buy them, they pointed out.
The note highlights the brain drain with the emigration of 40 percent of trained doctors and 30 percent of nurses.
‘Mental health needs are greater than ever, while the Covid-19 pandemic created an additional challenge,’ Tedros and Mandhari stressed.
The challenges are immense and threaten the loss of the many significant health gains that Lebanon achieved over the past decades, they emphasized.