Foreign Doctors to perform Heart Surgery in Benghazi

U.S. doctor William Novick (L) walks in a hospital in Benghazi, Libya [REUTERS/Esam Omran Al-Fetori]
A Group of foreign doctors arrived in Libyan eastern city of Benghazi to carry out heart surgery on at least 30 young children during a month-long flying visit.

According to Reuters, the doctors have been visiting eastern Libya since 2012, but did not go to Benghazi for two years because of fighting that has destroyed parts of the city and is still raging in one downtown neighborhood.

Healthcare and medical treatment are very difficult to get due to the collapse of the health system and an economic crisis that makes sending patients abroad nowhere near affordable.

This time they hope to operate on 30 to 40 children, though the final number will depend on the complexity of children’s’ defects. Most are under three years old. Some could die within weeks without the treatment, according to Reuters

Reuters added that the team is led by William Novick, an American doctor who set up a foundation that has treated children with heart disease in more than 30 developing countries. They train local staff as they work.

Initially, the trips to Libya were paid for by Libyan public funds, but these dried up and they now depend on private donations, it indicated.

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