Sharing on Gaza humanitarian operations by HKRC medical volunteer Dr. Au Yiu-kai

Posted on 25/03/2024

The ICRC medical team is based at the European Gaza hospital in the south of Gaza, primarily treating patients requiring specialized care, such as those suffering severe burns. Confronted with high caseload and depleting resources, Dr. Au recognized that it was impossible to save all lives and choices would have to be made. The hospital once received a 68-year-old patient with 30% body surface area burned. Despite being diagnosed as not eligible for curative treatment, much to Dr. Au’s delight, the woman managed to survive.

Medical facilities have repeatedly come under attack amid the ongoing escalation of hostilities. While the European Gaza Hospital was relatively safe from airstrikes, there were sporadic shooting and bombing nearby and the closest happened just 150 meters away. Despite all the risks, Dr. Au is not deterred. “Though what we can do might be little, but it means a lot to the people in Gaza to have someone travelling all the way just to offer a helping hand. I will continue to do so as long as possible.”

During the sharing, veteran humanitarian education volunteer Mr. Yam Tak-ming was also invited to explain the role of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) in times of conflicts. Yam used the metaphor of road safety to help explain why IHL still matters in face of the level of civilian casualties: Just as one would not deny the effectiveness of transportation regulations merely because of traffic accidents, the same principle applies to IHL. “It is no easy task to put IHL into practice during conflicts, relevant parties are however striving to make it work.” Therefore, the Hong Kong Red Cross has been dedicated to promoting international humanitarian law and advocating humanitarian education. Please click here to learn more about our humanitarian education initiatives.

Participants’ feedback:

"Gain a better understanding of the current situation in Gaza."

"For each overseas volunteer participating in short-term relief efforts, it means a great deal to those who are currently in distress."

"Discover the significant humanitarian support provided by the Red Cross to people affected by war."

"Gain a deeper understanding of the circumstances faced by healthcare personnel in conflict zones."

Dr. Au shared the situation of the local hospital. Veteran humanitarian education volunteer Mr. Yam Tak-ming sharing knowledge about international humanitarian law.


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