Israel and Gaza Crisis

Urgent humanitarian assistance is critically needed across the region. All parties must respect civilian lives and adhere to international humanitarian law.

In Israel, we do not have an operational presence, and as is often our practice in such cases, we support trusted partners on the ground who are responding. International Medical Corps is supporting one of our long-time partners—JDC—and its emergency response efforts in Israel. JDC also has supported some of our other humanitarian missions around the world.

In Gaza, where we’ve had staff on the ground since 2008, International Medical Corps is responding. We’ve deployed a 140-bed field hospital providing surgical, trauma, orthopedic, obstetric and newborn care, inpatient, outpatient, pharmacy and other lifesaving medical services to as many as 800 civilians per day affected by the war. We’re increasing access to health, protection, mental health, and water, sanitation and hygiene services, and ensuring a steady supply of medicines, supplies and training to those in need.

The Gaza Strip is a 25-mile long, 6-mile wide strip of land on the eastern Mediterranean coast that is home to about 2 million people.
According to the United Nations, Gaza is “among the poorest places in the world.“
Before the conflict began, more than half of Gaza’s population relied on humanitarian assistance and challenges accessing healthcare and protection services.
International Medical Corps has worked in Gaza since 2008, providing healthcare, mental health and psychosocial support, child protection and gender-based violence, and water, sanitation and hygiene services.

Our Response

With a current inpatient capability of 140 beds, we have deployed a field hospital in Gaza where hundreds of our heroic staff are providing care to thousands of people every week. The hospital offers surgical care for trauma, physical rehabilitation, comprehensive emergency obstetric and newborn care, advanced mental health services and more.

There are beds to support an emergency room, beds for post-operative care in the surgical ward, beds in the postnatal ward and beds for inpatient management of acute medical conditions. In addition, there is a Level 1 intensive-care unit, operating theatres, a fully stocked pharmacy, X-ray and ultrasound machines, a laboratory and blood-transfusion services.

Our multi-pronged, integrated approach focuses on immediate relief to save lives, alleviate suffering and promote well-being, while we contribute to ensuring longer-term resilience through training. We are:

  • increasing access to and availability of quality lifesaving medical and mental health services;
  • improving access to and availability of quality nutrition services;
  • reducing the risks and mitigating the consequences of gender-based violence (GBV) while addressing child protection concerns; and
  • improving access to safe drinking water and ensuring proper hygiene practices.

International Medical Corps coordinates with functioning facilities in Gaza to support patient referrals and ensure continuity of care wherever possible. To further extend health access and help overcome barriers to care for Gaza’s most vulnerable, International Medical Corps is providing services throughout the region by working with trusted partners.

Medical and Mental Health Services

The conflict has severely impacted the delivery of basic services—including health, nutrition, protection, and water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH)— while reducing supplies of water, food and fuel. Lack of potable water, linked to poor hygiene and sanitation, could trigger risks of infectious-disease outbreaks that the compromised health system in Gaza will not be able to respond to. As in any conflict, mental health needs are high, as the conflict is causing psychological distress and trauma to many, especially those who have witnessed or experienced violence, displacement and loss of loved ones or livelihoods.

Many secondary healthcare facilities have been damaged or destroyed, leaving behind just a few major hospitals that are focusing mostly on immediate needs, such as emergency and trauma care. The lack of services and medication to treat routine or chronic health conditions could lead to the exacerbation of such conditions, as well as increase the risk of acute illnesses among the population.

In addition to deploying our field hospital, International Medical Corps is supporting the health system in Gaza by procuring and delivering essential medications, supplies and equipment to hospitals and health facilities. We also are providing healthcare professionals and first responders with training on how to provide emergency- and trauma-care services, including psychological first aid (PFA). Finally, we are working with trusted partners to deliver primary healthcare and related services.


Increasing malnutrition also is a risk, especially for vulnerable groups that already may have issues accessing food, such as children, the elderly, and pregnant and lactating women.

Restrictions in food, water and other vital supplies have led to increased vulnerabilities for the Gaza population. International Medical Corps, which is expert in delivering infant, young-child and maternal nutrition services and supplies during emergencies, is providing nutrition services directly and through mother-baby spaces (MBS) to help children and their caregivers. International Medical Corps also is providing training for field hospital staff, partner organizations and service providers in counseling skills, referral criteria and providing breastfeeding support.

In addition, International Medical Corps is working closely with local and international partners—including UNICEF and the World Food Programme—to provide assistance. We also are leveraging our network of community health volunteers to monitor local populations for signs of malnutrition.


During times of conflict, risks for gender-based violence and child abuse rise, while unaccompanied minors and orphans are at heightened risk of poor health, malnutrition and violence.

We are working with partners to identify protection risks at shelters and other sites, and are addressing concerns about GBV directly and in coordination with other organizations. We are integrating GBV response services into the medical services that we provide in our field hospital and in communities, are providing case management and psychosocial support services in women’s and girls’ safe spaces that we already have set up in Gaza, and are training first responders—including women-led organizations—in GBV-oriented PFA.

The child-protection services we provide include referrals for emergency healthcare; identification, documentation and immediate tracing of unaccompanied minors; and emergency alternative care for unaccompanied children. We also provide PFA, psychosocial support, risk mitigation, coordination and advocacy services. We will establish mobile child-protection teams staffed by trained community volunteers who will identify and refer vulnerable or children at risk, as well as separated or unaccompanied minors, and will support and expand our existing child-friendly spaces where we and our partners can provide services.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)

To ensure safe and adequate drinking water for households and healthcare facilities, and reduce the risk of water-borne illnesses, International Medical Corps will distribute bottled drinking water to outpatients, discharged patients and healthcare personnel; provide personal hygiene items to reduce health risks; and encourage the adoption of best WASH practices through health and hygiene awareness-raising activities.

We also will focus on sanitation, ensuring the availability of latrines and providing safe temporary waste-disposal facilities equipped with handwashing stations. Finally, we will work closely with healthcare facilities to provide training to ensure proper implementation of infection prevention and control practices, providing cleaning and disinfecting tools and supplies where necessary.

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Situation Reports