Libyan Health Service Capacity

Helpdesk Query:

What capacity has the Libyan health service to respond to the current crisis including: technical capacity of staff; reliance on foreign health workers; medical supply distribution system; decentralisation of services; capacity of the private sector? Where possible look specifically at the Misurata municipal area.

Summary:

This report includes information on Libyan health service capacity, the health service response to the crisis, technical capacity of staff, reliance on foreign health workers, medical supply distribution system, decentralisation of services and the capacity of the private sector.

The report is divided into the following sections:

  1. Key document: health system profile
  2. Information from WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean (EMRO)
  3. Libyan Journal of Medicine documents
  4. News

Information on Libyan Health Service Capacity:

This includes information on primary and secondary healthcare.  The Magharebia news website reports that the health situation at the time of the report in Libya was worse than the official picture, in particular in relation to the skewed distribution and access issues for services.

Information on staff capacity:

  • The standard of nursing care in Libya is inadequate due to poor quality nursing education.
  • There is a shortage of qualified physicians, trained midwifery staff and specialists in the areas of anaesthesia, cardiology, and radiology.
  • Nursing is not taught to degree level, and curricula are out of date and lacking in clinical experience content.

News on the Libyan health service response to the crisis, March 2011:

  • Overall, health facilities were able to deal with the influx of wounded but they faced shortages in the supply of specific medical materials like anaesthesia and surgical sets.
  • Surgical beds were 80% occupied at Tobruk medical centre. Intensive care unit beds were at full capacity and all ventilators were occupied.
  • Misurata hospital was damaged in fighting.

 

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