Medicine Shortages In Lebanon Mean Curable Diseases Could Now Be Terminal

Pharmacy Owners Will Close Indefinitely Starting Friday
VOA News

As the country keeps moving backward amidst a daily deterioration of the USD exchange rate, problems that should have been left in the past are coming up successively. The most recent is medication shortages, and diseases that should be easily treated are now once again perilous.

Pharmacists have been calling for the government to supply medication for terminal diseases since the crisis started, and now so is George Kettani the Secretary-General of the Lebanese Red Cross.

Kettani told LBCI that the medication available to the Red Cross is either gifted or provided with foreign funding.

The Lebanese Red Cross has noted amidst transporting several patients to the ER that their aggravated situations are a result of not taking their medication.

The medication shortage stems directly from the unavailability of fresh dollars and the deterioration of the Lebanese Pound’s value.

Pharmacists closed their pharmacies on Tuesday in protest and gathered in front of the Health Ministry to voice out their demands, including for the ministry to end the indiscriminate smuggling of medicines without any control. 

The health sector also went on a 2-day strike this week and demonstrated yesterday, May 26th, in front of the Central Bank against the Bank’s policies and procedures that do not allow hospitals to obtain their money in cash while their owners need cash to secure medicines, medical supplies, diesel, and all other purchases.

Several protests and roadblocks took place on May 26th, including by the bakery owners, taxi drivers, and banks’ depositors, as well as activists from civil society.

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