Komorebi Post– “Mom put my jacket on, kissed me, and with eyes full of tears told me to come back home with a good health, I knew I’m going to miss my younger siblings, so I kissed them while they were sleeping” said Yazan. 11 years old boy- who was diagnosed with Lymphoma. Yazan had to travel alone to get treatment in Beit Jalah hospital in the West Bank. Both of Yazan’s parents were not able go with him because they did not get an Israeli security permission; Gaza is under siege and no one can leave Gaza or enter the West Bank without Israeli permission. Yazan’s parents, like many others, feel helpless for not being able to accompany their little sick child. He must go through the agony of chemotherapy alone while missing and needing his family’s support, particularly his parents. He explained:
“My parents talk to me and have the chance to see me only through the phone every single day, I miss them badly, but nothing can be done.” His father took him to the border and left him with his uncle’s wife- who was lucky to get a permission to enter the West Bank with Yazan.
Health crises and shortage of medication
The Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza Stripe announced cessation of chemotherapy for cancer patients due to the shortage of Neupogen (a medicine used to boost immunity in patients). This shortage puts the lives of 8260 patients at risk if the drug crisis is not immediately resolved.
According to the reports OF Hope and Assessment program to help cancer patients released at the World Cancer Day, at least 12 cases of cancer are recorded every week in the Gaza Strip. Gaza has seen a significant increase in cancer patients in recent years, and there has been a 30% increase in the previous year comparing to 2017.
Children separation of parents
In the next room of Beit Jalah hospital, lays Maysal Walid al-Wahidi, seven years old, girl, suffering from leukemia. She does not stop asking doctors and nurses about the time of her mother’s arrival from the Tel al-Hawa area in Gaza. The seven years old keeps holding her head looking down to the needle in her hand staring with sadness and boredom. The Israelis allowed a relative of her grandmother, an old lady to come along with Maysal. another tragic story is being endured by the Palestinian girl suffering
The doctors and nurses try to help kids by doing many activities like painting, dancing and bringing clowns to make them laugh. Dr. Ahmad Abu Sharikh explains: “I am living the tragedy, closely and on daily basis, but I keep pretending that everything is okay and try to make the patients laugh and forget as much as we can”.
Hundreds of similar stories are lived everyday by the Palestinian cancer patients who struggle to get cancer treatment in the West Bank. The few, who get approval are considered the luckiest, compared to the majority of cancer patients who die waiting for treatment.
Maysal Walid al-Wahidi speaking to her mom through the phone
The old lady received the permission to accompany the kid through a text message in the same early morning before leaving.