The construction of health facilities in the north of Syria has been a top priority during periods of peace. In al-Bab a new hospital will be opening soon which treats all cases that were previously transferred to Turkish Hospitals. However, the adminstation complains that professional cadres are hard to find.
Due to the relative stability that the city of al-Bab in Syria has seen, infrastructure is being rebuilt to serve the community living there. The latest development has been the building of the ‘Grand Hospital’ of al-Bab, a large hospital with multiple facilities and departments, which seeks to deal with all the medical problems that the city has seen in the past few years.
“The new hospital will treat all the medical problems that we have experienced including breathing issues and tumour treatment,” said Ahmed Awer the head of the Medical Bureau in al-Bab city. “Most specialties will be available at a high standard in the hospital.”
Previously, due to the lack of proper medical services, severe medical issues that were untreatable in al-Bab were transferred across the border to Turkey. However, the administration of the Grand Hospital says that such cases will no longer be taken to Turkey and will be treated inside Syria, as the necessary equipment has been acquired.
Although the hospital is near completion, the official opening has been hindered due to the absence of qualified medical staff in the city. “We require some time… staff because we suffer from a shortage of medical staff, especially qualified cadres.”
The lack of medical staff comes as a result of the brain drain that the city suffered under three years of ISIS rule and the occasional clashes that the city faces. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) also reported earlier this month that a number of rebel fighters have attacked and harassed medical staff in the city of al-Bab. Citizens complained that while the Turkish forces in the city have been treating the residents with care and improving security and services, some rebel groups that they back have shown occasional acts of lawlessness.
Nonetheless, the administration of al-Bab’s Grand Hospital is hopeful that the hospital will provide crucial services for the citizens once completed.
“We hope that in a short period, [the hospital] will be an urban edifice renowned throughout the region.”