Lebanon hospitals forced to turn away sick children amid exodus of health workers
Lebanon’s economy has been in freefall since 2019 and its currency has lost more than 90% of its value, forcing nearly three quarters of Lebanon’s population into poverty, and leading many physicians and nurses to seek better opportunities abroad.
Once among the best in the Middle East, Lebanon’s medical system is crumbling as hospitals and surgeries struggle to cope with departing staff on top of financial troubles and shortages.
Outside one of Lebanon’s leading hospitals, desperate parents arrive seeking help for their sick children, while inside its pediatric intensive care unit the beds lie empty and unattended.
There are simply not enough nurses to keep the unit open and staff are forced to turn away ill babies, said the hospital’s pediatric critical care head Elie Choueiry, amid a nationwide exodus of medical workers that is straining health systems.