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PCHR Concludes Training Course on “Human Rights and Mechanisms to Promote Right to Health” For Health Sector in Rafah

Ref: 41/2020

Date: 15 October 2020

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) concluded on Wednesday, 14 October 2020, a training course on “Human Rights and Mechanisms to Promote Right to Health,” attended by 27 Ministry of Health employees in Rafah.

PCHR took all the preventive and health safety measures for the trainers and trainees in compliance with COVID-19 standards. Instead of organizing one training course, participants were divided into two groups: the first targeted Rafah Health Management staff and was attended by 14 persons; and the second targeted 13 physicians and department heads at Abu Yousef al-Najjar hospital in Rafah. The 20-hour-training course was held over the course of 4 days, from 06 – 14 October 2020.

This training course is executed within PCHR 3-year project “Promote, Respect, and Fulfill the Right to the Highest Attainable Standard of Health in the Gaza Strip” implemented in partnership with the Palestinian Medical Relief Society (PMRS) and funded by the European Union. The project aims to improve access to healthcare, legal counseling and legal assistance for Palestinian patients; to mainstream the culture of international human rights and humanitarian law, particularly the right to health, by building the capacities of those working in the health sector; and to promote improved monitoring, documenting and reporting of violations of the right to health.

At the end of the course, PCHR held a closing ceremony where Abdel Halim Abu Samra, Head of PCHR’s Training Unit, emphasized that PCHR has given great attention to the right of health over the years training and raising the awareness of health workers, and that this project came about due to the continued deterioration of human rights situation, especially the right to health, because of the Israeli closure on the Gaza Strip and the consequences of the Palestinian political division and spread of coronavirus in the Gaza Strip. All of that, aggravated the terrible humanitarian situation due to the extreme lack in medicines, medical devices and equipment, and in hospital beds and trained medical professionals warning of the imminent collapse of the health sector.

Dr. Fawaz Abu-Zyada, Head of Rafah Health Department, commended the training and its importance especially that it came at a time where the Gaza Strip is undergoing unique health and security circumstances due to the spread of the coronavirus in the Gaza Strip, which has affected all aspects of life calling on PCHR to continue these activities and training courses to build the capacity of workers in the field of human rights and the right to health to improve access to health services.

For his part, Dr. Mohammed al-Hams, Medical Director at Abu-Yusuf al-Najjar Hospital, applauded PCHR’s pioneering role in disseminating and promoting the culture of human rights, especially the right to health for all sectors of the Palestinian society, as well as PCHR’s effective role in following with all relevant bodies to improve the reality of the health situation in the Gaza Strip. He also stressed on the importance of sustaining the health sector’s relation with PCHR and developing it to reach a society that is fully aware of their rights, calling upon the Centre to continue its training activities, especially that the training course offered rich topics and contributed to raising participants’ awareness in human rights in general, and the right to health in particular.