Syrian Arab Republic

Nurses who made a difference

Photo caption: The Head Nurse at Al-Hikmah non-governmental hospital in Al-Hasakeh governorate in north east Syria. WHO Syria 2019The Head Nurse at Al-Hikmah nongovernmental hospital in Al-Hasakeh governorate in north-east Syria. Photo: WHO/Syria 2019

20 August 2019 – 32-year-old Bayan is the head nurse at Al-Hikmah hospital in Al-Hasakeh governorate. She has spent the past 8 years in critical care, looking after emergency, trauma and intensive care patients. “Nursing is immensely fulfilling”, she says. “People are admitted in a critical condition, and you nurse them back to health. You accompany them on their journey: you rejoice with them when they make progress, you encourage them when there are setbacks, and you let them express their fears and frustrations. Not all of them do so well, of course; some patients die suddenly, and not all newborn babies survive.”

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Elizabeth Hoff: Seven years of tireless work in war-torn Syria

14 July 2019 – When Elizabeth Hoff was appointed as WHO Representative in Syria in 2012, she didn’t expect that she would spend the next several years leading the emergency health response in what has been described as the world’s largest and most complex humanitarian emergency. After seven years of working in the war-ravaged country, the next chapter of her career will take her to Libya, where she has been nominated WHO Representative.

“I leave Syria with a heavy heart,” she says. “This has been the richest and most rewarding position I’ve ever held.”

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  • Nurses who made a difference
    Nurses who made a difference
  • Elizabeth Hoff: Seven years of tireless work in war-torn Syria
    Elizabeth Hoff: Seven years of tireless work in war-torn Syria



Health sector 4Ws snapshots The health sector 4Ws snapshots indicates which partners are doing what, where and at which time. Health sector 4Ws snapshots Summary of key indicators WHO’s key indicators reports illustrate the...

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In focus

Situation reports on north-west Syria

Situation overview The escalation of conflict in north-west Syria continued unabated during the reporting period, impacting civilians, health care infrastructure and health service provision in northern Hama and southern Idleb governorates. Since...

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Key health-related statistics

Total population (000s)

24 422

Total health expenditure (% of general government expenditure)


Maternal mortality ratio (per 100 000 live births)


Primary health care centres and units (per 10 000 population)


Total life expectancy at birth (years)


Source: Framework for health information systems and core indicators for monitoring health situation and health system performance, 2018

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