Interview with the Gaza Community Mental Health Program on the Covid-19 Impact in the Gaza Strip [March 28, 2020]

Dr. Yasser Abu Jamei, the head of the Gaza Community Mental Health Program, is interviewed about the Corona virus situation in the Gaza Strip.  When the interview took place two people had been identified as positive for Covid-19.  By the end of March the number had risen to ten.   [Watch]

Podcast interview with Mariam Abualatta, a Project Officer from one of our partner organizations Aisha Association for Women and Child Protection [March 26, 2020]

What life is like in the Gaza Strip in the days since two cases of the coronavirus have been reported. [Listen]

Coronavirus enters the Gaza Strip

On March 22  Palestinian health authorities detected the first two cases of the coronavirus in the Gaza Strip.  The two Palestinian men had returned from Pakistan via Egypt and were placed in quarantine in Rafah.  Living in one of the most densely-crowded places on earth, where 98% of the water is not fit to drink and the health care system is collapsing, the 2 million residents of the Gaza Strip are considered to be highly endangered by the pandemic.

Here, Jehad Abusalim, a Gaza policy analyst now studying at New York University, describes why the virus presents such a deadly threat to the Gaza Strip. [Read]

Gaza Mental Health Foundation deplores mental health impact of Trump ‘peace plan’

The January 2020 Trump/Kushner plan for Israel/Palestine, ironically titled Peace to Prosperity, is a flawed, ahistorical document that is basically a gift to the Israeli government, affirming and giving international blessings to much of the status quo. The document claims that decades-long problems can only be solved by ignoring history and international law and proposing technocratic solutions to political problems and issues of social justice.

The Gaza Mental Health Foundation is focused on supporting institutions in Gaza that sustain research and treatment for psychological disorders grounded in traditional psychiatric theory and practice as well as an understanding that mental health cannot exist without human rights.

To this end, recognizing that the Trump plan makes no mention of human rights for Palestinians and no acknowledgement of the Israeli military aggression that is a core feature of occupation and siege, we deplore this latest development.

This proposal will also have a serious negative impact for those living in the region, increasing the already massive stressors on the economy, health, housing, education, access to water, and raising the level of despair and poverty. Thus from a clinical point of view, looking at the plan’s impact on physical and mental health, we also express our deep concern.

We join many in the US and the international community in exposing this plan as a carefully worded political charade that cannot possibly be supported by those who care about a viable future for Israelis and Palestinians and by those who understand the realities on the ground.

Alice Rothchild for the board of the Gaza Mental Health Foundation

Health and Human Rights Media Watch

Updates from the Jewish Voice for Peace Health Advisory Council [Read]