IDEALS was approached by a third year medical student enquiring about the possibility of visiting Gaza on one of our routine visits. The student has an eclectic interest in medicine and was not simply interested in seeing the effects of war. He was able to accompany Dr Andy Ferguson and John Beavis in July 2011 and was present as arrangements were made for the charity's involvement in care for the chronically disabled. In addition, he was able to meet a large number of medical personnel and take part in clinical activities involving the burns unit and the operating theatres' work. He was present during a major ward round in the rehabilitation unit at Al Wafa Hospital which had suffered massive damage during Operation Cast Lead in December 2009. Thankfully the hospital has been largely rebuilt but for many months the staff have had no or very little payment for their extraordinary activity. The work and clinical content of this experience was very valuable. Most importantly he met the ordinary Gazan people and witnessed the privations of a seige and the continued hope for peace and return to a normal life. He was present at one of the major graduation ceremonies of the Islamic University having been invited there by Professor Mofeed, Director of Surgery and Dean of the Medical School. His visit was combined with a one month tour of The West Bank and Israel and has written a commentary on his visit to Gaza.
Thu 01 Sep 2011