Libya’s health system struggles after exodus of foreign medical staff

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d1879 (Published 22 March 2011)
Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d1879

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  1. John Zarocostas
  1. 1Geneva

The World Health Organization and other relief agencies have stepped up the delivery of drugs, surgical supplies, and personnel to treat large numbers of casualties and people affected by the escalation of hostilities in Libya.

Fadela Chaib, a WHO spokeswoman, told reporters on 22 March, “The conflict has led to acute shortages of essential medicines, including anaesthesia drugs. This poses particular problems given the current high rate of patients admitted to hospitals with acute trauma injuries that require urgent surgical intervention.”

The agency said there is also a “huge shortage” of drugs to treat chronic diseases, such …

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