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Access to healthcare for children in Palestine
  1. Tony Waterston1,
  2. Dina Nasser2
  1. 1 Institute of Health and Society, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK
  2. 2 Juzoor for Health and Social Development, Ramallah, Palestine
  1. Correspondence to Dr Tony Waterston, 20 Burdon Terrace, Newcastle upon Tyne NE23AE, UK; tony.waterston{at}


Currently, 5 million Palestinian refugees live in Palestine, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon and around 40% of these are children. Mortality rates for Palestinian children are comparable to neighbouring Arab countries but the speed of reduction has faltered in recent years. Morbidity is greatly affected by the occupation which has increased violence towards children, mental health problems and poor nutrition, particularly in Gaza which is experiencing a health crisis. Access to healthcare for children in Palestine is constrained as a result of the requirement for visas to travel into Jerusalem where specialist hospitals are sited, by difficulties with ambulance transfers, by shortages of equipment in hospitals and by lack of trained staff. Palestinian health workers are developing new initiatives in healthcare and show a high level of resilience, despite the very considerable stress affecting most citizens.

  • paediatric practice
  • comm child health
  • children’s rights

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  • Contributors TW conceptualised and designed the study, collated references, drafted the initial manuscript, and reviewed and revised the manuscript. DN commented on the design, collated references and examples, and reviewed and revised the manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement Any unpublished data are freely available to all readers.

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