With No Specific Law to Protect Them, Health Care Workers Are at Risk


At the end of 2008, Dr. Dirhem Al-Qadasi, the head of the emergency room at the Science and Technology Hospital in Sana’a, a private health care facility, was stabbed to death. Those responsible for his murder are believed to be family members of an elderly man who died while at the hospital who were seeking revenge for the man’s death. According to former patients and colleagues, the doctor had a sterling reputation. News of Al-Qadasi’s death caused a media storm and popular outrage, but no one was ever tried for the doctor’s murder.

Al-Qadasi and healthcare workers like him, ranging from domestic doctors to volunteers with local and international health organizations, are often at the mercy of a population, who can be very mistrustful of healthcare practices.

All over Yemen, health care workers are struggling to protect themselves against attacks varying from threats on their lives to kidnappings to the robbery of vital medical supplies, and little seems to being done to mitigate the problem.

Following the 2011 uprising that toppled President Ali Abdullah Saleh, security all over Yemen was compromised. Several healthcare workers say this is when a growing number of attacks on those in their field reached its peak. A countless number of ambulances were stolen all over the country and even female medics, a group that typically is not targeted in attacks, were being kidnapped.

The full article continues at http://www.yementimes.com/en/1710/health/2869/With-no-specific-law-to-protect-them-health-care-workers-are on the Yemen Times website.