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January 2021 Newsletter
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January 2021 Activities and Updates from UOSSM USA

UOSSM Activities

UOSSM Commemorates 9th Anniversary on January 7

As we commemorate our 9th anniversary since UOSSM was established we would like to thank you. Thank you for supporting us and trusting us. On behalf of our UOSSM family, staff and healthcare workers who put their lives on the line every single day, in support of those affected by the war in Syria, thank you. With your support, we will continue to support and provide healthcare and lifesaving support to the most vulnerable of communities. Together, we are saving lives and building hope

Please click here if you would like to support our work.

UOSSM Turkey Opens Special Needs Rehabilitation Center in Idlib

UOSSM Turkey opened a Special Needs Rehabilitation Center (SNR) in Idlib. The center began operating on February 1, 2021. The center will provide services to children with special needs, pervasive development disorders (such as Autism), mental retardation (such as Down Syndrome), language and speech disorders, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and children with learning difficulties in schools. In addition, the center will provide training to parents and families on how to deal with children with special needs. The trainings are guided through individual and group awareness sessions

UOSSM Establishing Mental Health Inpatient Hospitalization Unit for Acute Cases in Al Bab in Northern Syria

UOSSM will establish a mental health inpatient hospitalization unit for acute cases in Al Bab area. The aim of this unit is to enhance access to comprehensive mental health and psychosocial support services for treating acute mental disorders.

The acute mental health unit will be the third one of its kind throughout northern Syria, along with two other acute mental health units in Sarmada, Idlib, and Azaz, Aleppo, with the capability of providing specialized mental health services, psychotropic medications with a comprehensive inpatient regimen according to WHO standards, along with necessary required medical care.

UOSSM Continues to Support Three Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Centers in Idlib

UOSSM will continue to support three mental health and psychosocial support centers in Idlib aiming to ensure the continuity and sustainability of integrated MHPSS services in the Harem area and Deir Hassan Displacement Camps in Idlib, and the Karama Displacement Camps in Al-Dana.

The MHPSS services are provided by doctors trained in the mhGAP program, psychosocial workers (PSW), and community health workers, to provide quality mental health diagnosis, management and treatment. In addition, MHPSS services will provide structured, quality mental health and psychosocial support by well-trained psychosocial workers, which will ensure the continuity of quality healthcare and psychosocial support in the field of mental healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic.

UOSSM Supports Early Childhood Development Services Program in Northern Syria

UOSSM is supporting early childhood development (ECD) services that aim to integrate the ECD program into gender-based violence (GBV) activities ensuring young children have the opportunity to develop and learn through play-based activities.

This program ensures that both caregivers and children have access to health services, nutrition services and other services in the community by connecting them to service providers through a safe referral pathway. These services will be provided through the WGSS Center for Women and Girls, and the Men’s and Youth Center in Atma.

Impact Story- Basel

UOSSM’s community health team was making rounds in displacement camps in Idlib, Syria. When they met with the family of Basel they discovered a severely malnourished child that also suffered from iron deficiency. Basel did not begin eating solid foods until he was nine months old because he was suffering previously from colon infections. He was diagnosed with severe acute malnutrition according to the measurement on the MUAC bracelet.

The baby was referred to the nutrition clinic in the Quorqania PHC where he is now being treated for malnutrition. The community health workers provided advice to his mother to continue nursing him and offering the baby a wide variety of nutritious foods to improve his health. Basel was provided with nutritious supplements and will continue treatment until he reaches a normal weight. Healthcare should not be a privelege…everyone should have the right to free, quality healthcare. UOSSM wants to ensure this by providing accessible, free quality healthcare, via medical centers and mobile clinics, to those who need it most. We will continue to achieve this thanks to your support!

Together, we are saving lives and building hope.

Did you know?

Since 2012, UOSSM has been providing emergency medical relief and healthcare services to the Syrian people affected by the crisis, working primarily inside Syria and with Syrian refugees in Turkey.

In 2019:

  • UOSSM provided medical services to almost 1.5 million people in Syria and Turkey
  • UOSSM provided primary health care services to over 235,000 people
  • UOSSM provided protection services to over 29,000 people
  • UOSSM provided over 93,500 beneficiaries with nutrition services focused on
    women and children
  • UOSSM Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Services provided care to over 34,000 people
  • UOSSM Bab Al Hawa Hospital provided health care services to over 1 million patients since establishment through the end of 2019

UOSSM USA is a US federally tax-exempt non-profit 501(c)(3) Charitable Humanitarian organization. Tax-Exempt. Tax ID 47-3403988. All donations to UOSSM USA are fully deductible from taxes to the greatest extent permitted by law. Charitable Solicitation Disclosures available on our website: www.uossm.us

Copyright © *2021* *UOSSM USA, All rights reserved.

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BREAKING: Syria Reports First Case of COVID-19, UOSSM Expects Parabolic Jump In Cases
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March 24, 2020

BREAKING: Syria Reports First Case of COVID-19, UOSSM Expects Parabolic Jump In Cases

Dallas, Texas- This weekend the Syrian Government reported their first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Damascus (not including Northern Syria). UOSSM projects a significantly higher number of cases that have gone unreported. Over 80% of the medical infrastructure in Syria is operating at a limited capacity and COVID-19 testing kits are extremely inaccessible.

UOSSM predicts a parabolic jump of cases in North Western Syria in the next two weeks. The medical system definitively does not have the capacity to cope with the influx. The UN reports that there are 4,178,480 people in North Western Syria, living in densely populated conditions with little access to healthcare. In Idlib (pop. 3.5+ million) there are 201 ICU beds and only 95 ventilators. 100% of the ventilators are currently in use and not available to treat COVID-19 patients. In North Western Syria there is currently only one PCR Lab. In the past 12 months alone, 85 medical facilities have been attacked and most are currently not functional. The medical infrastructure cannot handle the existing population needs let alone a wide spread pandemic. Medical staff suffer from a shortage of masks, gloves, gowns, disinfectant, thermal scanners and other medical supplies.
Years of war and malnutrition have left many people’s immune systems compromised and the entire population susceptible to drastically higher mortality rates. It is predicted that the transmission rates will be dramatically higher than global averages due to densely populated IDP camps and multiple families living in the same dwelling.

Dr. Khaula Sawah, Vice President of UOSSM USA said, “ Even though there is only one confirmed case this does not reflect the actual number of active cases in Syria. There have been reports of people who are sick with symptoms similar to COVID-19 however there is very limited laboratory diagnostic capacity to confirm. According to WHO and based on the current epidemiological situation in the region with the rapid spread of cases in neighboring countries, including Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq, WHO considers the overall risk for Syria to be very high. Considering the disrupted and fragile health system, the risk of the spread of diseases is high in Aleppo and Idleb governorates.
It is terrifying to think about what will happen if this spreads to areas of displacement, as millions are living in densely populated areas with no option for social distancing, limited access to soap, clean water, medical supplies, and a major shortage of ICU beds and ventilators. I fear the death toll could be catastrophic.”

UOSSM ‘s response and preparedness plan for Covid-19 as follows:

UOSSM’s mobile clinics have made it a top priority to visit communities and educate the population on social distancing, hygiene practices and steps if people are symptomatic.
UOSSM has nurse/staff in front of medical facilities to screen patients and direct them to the right area.
UOSSM has asked all health workers to attend the WHO online course “Introduction to Emerging Respiratory Viruses, Including Novel Coronavirus”.
UOSSM’s technical team has trained all health workers in UOSSM PHC centers on the detection of suspected cases, handling of cases, referral of cases, and reporting.
UOSSM is working in close collaboration with the Idlib Health Directorate to implement a ‘COVID-19 Response Plan’. A few days ago, the Idlib Health Directorate announced the opening of an epidemic surveillance laboratory to carry out PCR tests to identify COVID-19 (testing kits currently unavailable).



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