Meet Alia Salam, SAMS Psychosocial Manager in Lebanon
“I have a lot of family who are affected by the conflict. I know how much they struggle, and how poor their mental health and emotional well-being is.”
Alia Salam recently started working with the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS) in Lebanon, as the Psychosocial Support Program Manager. For Alia, who is half Syrian, half Lebanese, her work is intensely personal.
Hala al-Nufi is 2 years old. She weighs 4.10 kilograms (9 pounds). Since the age of seven months, Hala has struggled with health problems, according to her mother, Um Sayyah. Around that time, Um Sayyah was able to take her to daughter to Damascus to seek medical care through tunnels between East Ghouta and Damascus. Damascus is a mere 10 kilometres away, but an entirely different world.
“Hala spent 5 months at a hospital in Damascus receiving treatment. We were happy that her condition improved and were able to get back home to Sabqa in East Ghouta,” said Um Sayyah.
As we arrived to Balukhali camp in Cox’s Bazar, we witnessed massive floods surrounding tents like islands, with Rohingya refugees attempting to swim to the main road for safety.
“This flooding is caused by last night’s rainfall” remarked Mrs. Khatun.
Washington, D.C.- Yesterday, the Government of Syria and its allies carried out three aerial attacks on medical facilities in Idlib, Hama, and besieged East Ghouta. These attacks are part of an intensifying escalation of violence directly targeting the medical infrastructure of areas outside of government control.
More than half a million Rohingya refugees have fled persecution in Myanmar, seeking refuge in makeshift shelters in Bangladesh. In order to respond to the growing need for medical care in Bangladesh, SAMS Global Response (SGR) has partnered with a local medical organization, Gonoshaathata Kendra (GK) to assess the situation in Cox’s Bazar and deliver medical assistance, including supporting mobile and static clinics, distributing medical supplies and addressing nutritional needs.
WASHINGTON, D.C., JULY 31, 2017 – Earlier this month, WWE Superstar Sami Zayn teamed up with the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS) to launch the #SamiForSyria campaign. The campaign seeks to raise funds to launch a new mobile clinic, which would provide primary medical aid for civilians in Syria who otherwise have no access to health care.
World Refugee Day, June 20, is a global day to **commemorate the resilience, bravery, and strength of people who have escaped conflict and are rebuilding their lives**.
The UN estimates that **over 11 million Syrians are displaced both inside and outside of their home country, making Syrians the largest refugee population in the world. **Refugees face barriers in accessing high quality healthcare. Many must grapple with constant fear, uncertainty, and instability.
June 7, 2017
In recent days, the aerial bombardment campaign over Dara’a has intensified. According to reports from the ground, in the first five days of June, there have been approximately 330 direct fire activities, including air raids, explosive barrels, artillery, rockets, explosive cylinders, and explosive charges. These attacks have been carried out by the Syrian government and its allies, and represent a dramatic increase from the 165 aerial attacks which took place last month.
Washington, D.C.- Earlier today, a team of medical doctors affiliated with al-Ghouta medical office in East Ghouta came under attack from a local armed group. Three doctors, including one who is supported by SAMS, were forcibly detained as they were traveling to a nearby hospital. Thankfully, the doctors were released. However, when other health workers came to the location to stand in solidarity with their colleagues, the armed fighters began shooting at their vehicles.
Washington, D.C.- Over the past few weeks, systematic and targeted attacks on healthcare in Syria have intensified. According to our staff on the ground, in April alone, 24 attacks on healthcare were carried out by the Syrian government and its allies, killing 10 health workers and injuring 16.
Yesterday, a hospital in Deir Sharqy in Al Ma’ara, south of Idlib, was targeted by four airstrikes, killing 3 patients and injuring 3 medical workers. The hospital maintained structural damages.
In 2016, SAMS provided more than 3 million medical services, and expanded its programs to reach more Syrians and vulnerable populations.
2016 was a difficult and challenging year for SAMS. Our health workers braved besiegement, aerial attacks, and starvation, to continue caring for their communities, while our volunteers provided specialized care to displaced populations outside Syria.
Washington, D.C. – Following this morning’s attack in Al Rashdeen on a convoy of evacuees from the towns of Foah and Kafrayya, SAMS medical staff in the area are working tirelessly to treat the victims. More than 60 patients are currently being treated at a SAMS-supported hospital in Al-Atareb, and SAMS ambulance system has also transported more than 30 patients to a SAMS hospital in Aqrabat and Bab Al Hawa hospital. Many of the doctors working in Al-Atareb were themselves displaced from Aleppo city in the end of 2016.
For Immediate Release
March 30, 2017
Washington, D.C. – At least 30 dialysis patients in besieged East Ghouta are in dire need of access to lifesaving treatment. These patients, which range from 21 years old to 83 years old, are in various stages of kidney failure. This lack of access has deadly consequences for patients. Two dialysis patients, 52 year old Mahrous and 60 year old Fayzah, died this week due to the lack of dialysis treatment.
SAMS launches report documenting 2016 as the most dangerous year for healthcare in Syria
Washington, D.C. – Earlier today, two hospitals, including a children’s hospital, and the Central Blood Bank in eastern Aleppo City were reportedly hit by 10 barrel bombs, killing more than 19 people, including children, and injuring many. In the past five days, there have been 13 attacks on medical facilities across northern Syria – that’s one attack every 9 hours. Six of these attacks targeted SAMS-supported facilities in the countrysides of Aleppo, Idlib, and Hama.
Washington, D.C. - Today at approximately 2:30 in the afternoon, another attack targeted SAMS’s largest trauma hospital, known as M10, in eastern Aleppo City. The hospital has been attacked more than four times in one week. Today, a bunker buster bomb landed in front of the entrance, killing three maintenance workers and injuring a nurse and ambulance driver. The workers, along with medical staff, had been working to repair damage from the previous attacks, which had forced the hospital out of operation. The hospital has now been completely destroyed.
Washington, DC - On August 3, a SAMS-supported facility and nursing institute in Aleppo were hit by a vacuum bomb, a weapon outlawed by international law. One of the ambulances for the hospital was also destroyed in the attack. The hospital was out of service at the time of the attack due to severe damage from previous attacks. Since June, this facility has been targeted 5 times.
Despite Aid Deliveries, Besieged Syrians in Madaya Starving to Death
Report from Physicians for Human Rights and Syrian American Medical Society shows deteriorating health conditions in Syrian town
Washington, DC: On Tuesday, June 14 at around 9:00 PM in Aleppo, a hospital supported by the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS) in eastern Aleppo City was severely damaged when an airstrike struck about 30 meters away from the main entrance to the hospital. There were no casualties reported, only a few minor injuries. The attack damaged all units in the hospital and destroyed the walls of the SAMS-supported nursing institute next door. The facility is now being repaired and remains partially functional.