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Beirut explosion: Mental health of people affected is under threat

George H. A. (pictured), like many other people, received initial medical care after the explosion. However, trauma and Covid-19 remain a threat to full recovery. Photo: Sina Schweikle/Malteser International

Cologne/Beirut. One week after responding to the devastating explosion that took place in Beirut, Malteser International is focusing on restocking medical supplies, strengthening measures against Covid-19, and providing psychosocial support.

"Physical wounds have been treated, but the catastrophe and the sudden loss of basic security have done extensive damage to the mental health of people affected," said Clemens Mirbach, Malteser International's Country Coordinator for Lebanon. "Many patients have asked us for sedatives to get over the next twenty-four hours. A specialist will be deployed to Lebanon in the coming days to help provide psychosocial care for trauma victims."

Malteser International is also worried that the recent tragedy could lead to an increase in the already rising number of Covid-19 cases in Lebanon.

Alongside the Lebanese Association of the Knights of Malta (LAKM) and about 200 volunteers from the Order of Malta, Malteser International is responding in the aftermath of the massive explosion that occurred in Beirut, Lebanon on Tuesday, August 4, 2020. The explosion damaged buildings across a wide swath of the city, leaving many homes without windows or doors. "Many people do not want to leave their homes out of security concerns," said Mirbach. "Volunteers are handing out food packages, visiting vulnerable people and bringing them essential supplies. They also continue to assist in the cleanup efforts."

Since the summer of 2014, Malteser International has delivered lifesaving healthcare services to vulnerable Syrian refugees and host communities in cooperation with the local association of the Order of Malta in Lebanon.

Note to editors:
Raymond Tarabay is in Lebanon and available for interviews.

Press contact:
Michael Etoh
+49 (0)221 9822 7183,

Malteser International is urgently appealing for funds to provide life-saving assistance!
Reference: "Lebanon"



Katharina Kiecol
Email: katharina.kiecol(at)malteser-international.org

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