Lebanese Doctor’s Viral Selfie Shows The Struggle of Health Workers

Mohamed Houssam Boulad | Al-Khaleej

Mohamed Houssam Boulad is a Lebanese doctor and one of the many heroes fighting COVID-19 at the Rafic Hariri University Hospital (RHUH), as well as other hospitals in Lebanon.

These doctors have been tirelessly working day and night to treat patients and control the virus’ spread in Lebanon. Most of them are far away from home and haven’t seen their family in weeks.

Just as medical teams have been looking after the whole country in these tough times, the people, in their turn, have been looking after them.

Several campaigns of support were launched in an attempt to ease the medics’ struggles, like ‘Baytak Beytna‘ that is coordinating between Airbnb owners and health workers to provide them with free accommodation, and ‘Siyaretna Siyatrak’ (Our Car is Your Car) that provides medics with free rental cars.

Doctors, nurses, and members of the Lebanese Red Cross have been sleeping at work because they don’t want to risk spreading the virus and putting their families in danger.

Dr. Boulad is no stranger to the hardships COVID-19 brought to health workers. A few days ago, he posted a picture on social media of himself sleeping in his car, followed by the message: “When you are in an emergency and there’s no place at the hospital for you to sleep during your shift, then you are forced to sleep in the car.”

Mohamed Houssam Boulad

He continued: ” I am not upset. All of us, as doctors, are prepared to endure months of this. However, you also need to help us by staying home.”

The picture incited mixed reactions, most of which were from people who blamed the Rafic Hariri University Hospital, accusing it of being negligent to its doctors.

To these accusations, Mohamed responded, saying that RHUH was and remains “the first fort and the impenetrable dam” in the face of the current epidemic.

He explained that the urgent measures taken by the hospital, with the efforts of the administration and all employees, are proactive and highly professional.

Noting that, after the increase in the number of patients, RHUH has transformed the doctors’ dorms into a well-equipped floor for COVID-19 patients.

Get the latest news and updates about the coronavirus outbreak in Lebanon along with a live monitor of cases in Lebanon as well as resources and information to help you guide the outbreak on our dedicated coronavirus page.