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ASPHER Comment on the Physicians for Human Rights - Israel Statement of 7 Apr 2020
On 7 April 2020, on behalf of the Association, ASPHER President John Middleton signed the Statement of the Physicians for Human Rights - Israel.
At such a critical moment, ASPHER calls to find innovative ways to foster collaborations between Israelis and Palestinians and to help Gaza and the West Bank to combat COVID-19. Where medication and equipment are unavailable because of budgetary shortages of the Palestinian health system, Israel and the international community should help ensure the supply of missing materials, to the greatest extent possible. Moreover, all sides should help to ensure that there is a steady supply of electricity and fuel so that hospitals and the general population can maintain reasonable levels of hygiene.
Health risks associated with Infectious diseases know no borders. Yet, within and between countries different impacts exist according to social, economic and political determinants of health. Only global and regional collaborations can stop a pandemic. This is true particularly in a region such as the Middle East. While during normal times hundreds of thousands of people cross daily between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a barrier to regional collaboration. Important initiatives such as those of the Middle East Consortium on Infectious Disease Surveillence (MECIDS - see here: http://www.mecidsnetwork.org/content/challenges-facing-covid-19-pandemic) and other bottom up collaborative work between Palestianian and Israeli researchers should be encouraged. The COVID-19 pandemic highlights the fundamental role of the public health sector, as well as the inevitability of regional and global collaboration.
We ask that ASPHER Members Institutions consider signing below to lend their individual support to the PHRI Statement with the ASPHER comment. If you wish to do so, please contact the ASPHER Secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jose M. Martin-Moreno
Chair, ASPHER Honours Committee
Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health
University of Valencia, Spain
School of Public Health
Ben Gurion University of the Negev
Beer Sheva, Israel
Manfred S Green
Director International MPH Program
University of Haifa, Israel
Institute of Public Health
University of Porto, Portugal
University of Michigan-Flint, United States
EHESP School of Public Health
Department of International Health
Maastricht University, The Netherlands
Catholic University, Lisbon, Portugal
University College Dublin, Ireland
Swiss School of Public Health+
Faculty of Public Health
Medical University - Sofia, Bulgaria
Raj S Bhopal
Emeritus Professor of Public Health
Edinburgh Migration, Ethnicity and Health Research Group,
Usher Institute, Medical School, University of Edinburgh