Nurse describes medical mission in Gaza

Posted on Jun 19, 2018

Dina Nasser, health advisor at the Lutheran World Federation’s Augusta Victoria Hospital describes the wounds she helped treat during a medical mission to help those shot during the Right of Return marches in Gaza.

Dina Nasser, health advisor at the Lutheran World Federation’s Augusta Victoria Hospital talks about the long-term prognosis for those severely injured during the Right of Return marches in Gaza.

Dina Nasser, health advisor at the Lutheran World Federation’s Augusta Victoria Hospital talks about the future of Gaza and the huge number of newly disabled residents following the Right of Return marches.

Reflection from Gaza by Dina Nasser

May 29 2018

For that young man we had hope we could make a difference.

We left, hoping we had made a difference, a few days later I called the father of the young man who we cared for and he informed me that he was not taken among the injured to Jordan, why? there was no reason, we hoped he could be referred to Jerusalem, the risk of infection was high, his father was hopeful and said will try .
We had met Z as we walked into the ICU , he was having his wound dressed , sedation , bleeding , low hemoglobin , shock he was gasping for life , we intervened , he was resuscitated , later in the night he deteriorated he was still bleeding his hemoglobin dropped to 5 he was resuscitated with blood, taken into the OR and a femoral bypass and a flap done by the vascular surgeon on our team , the next morning he was smiling ushering us to give him some fluids to drink , somehow we connected perhaps for this one young man, I thought , our presence has made a difference, his family expressed thanks and gratitude to the surgeon. Are you related to this young man I asked to the man visiting him on our last day, as I was awaiting our team to see him one more time, I am he said, I am a doctor “, so nice to meet you so happy to see him doing better how is he related to you ?” “He is my adopted son, we came rushing in the night when they told us his situation deteriorated…” Thoughts came rushing to alone in this world, wondering what the life of Z was actually like , it was too much to bear, tears welled up in my eyes he apologized and I apologized in return. We left Monday the 22nd feeling hopeful bidding him and his family farewell sure he would be moved to Jordan with the medical mission for further care.

Sunday 26th Back in Jerusalem, It was midday we were getting ready to leave home for lunch with the family celebrating my nieces graduation , the phone rang it was the father , his voice did not sound good , z… had bled , they had taken him back to surgery occluded the artery and his leg was turning gangrenous , they could not get him to Jerusalem he was not allowed, for security reasons they said , I felt helpless I called my colleagues the vascular surgeon who had saved his leg , he was devastated , what could we do , we called the directors of the Jerusalem hospitals ,they tried to advocate for him sent all the details, his father called again this morning any luck , no luck, they were waiting for him to go into surgery , we were hopeful we could still make a difference , but we could not , his leg had to be amputated and the answer was no he was not allowed into Jerusalem.

Monday the 28th, Back in Gaza , we visited him , smiling as usual how are you I said, good thank you , I wanted to come to you but they would not let me , there he was in bed with an above knee amputation looking pale yet smiling thanking us for all that we have done, I am eternally grateful for the vascular surgeon he said , I hope I can come to you my dream is to come to Jerusalem , I promised we would keep trying, another young man next to him had bilateral amputations , there are too many one person said to me , after you left there had been several amputations …….I heard I said , I can still be upset can’t I , at least for Z I had hoped we could make a difference .