An Israeli Army doctor has set up an emergency clinic just on the Israeli side of the border with Lebanon.
An Israeli Army doctor has set up an emergency clinic just on the Israeli side of the border with Lebanon. The clinic is principally aimed at those who are not war wounded, and has been established in an apple orchard.
SYNOPSIS: This area of the border has been the scene of many bloody clashes in the past. Now there's neither sight nor sound of military activity on the Lebanese side, although Israeli machine gunners still man fortified posts.
About 35 patients a day arrive at the fence from mid-morning to dusk. They're allowed through the gate in the fence one at a time and treatment is given in an ambulance close to the fence. The patient know the doctor only as "Doctor Israel". He's an ear, nose and throat specialist doing reserve duty with the forces. While he treats his cases, troops distribute coffee to those waiting.
Many of his patients are children or babies, suffering from various ailments, although many are pregnant mothers or old men and women. They are unable to get treatment in their own areas and say many of their doctor have left the country. The doctor's medical supplies of medicines, pills and syringes are contained in two old ammunition boxes.
A few of the patients were wounded in the war, and the majority of patients treated have been Christians. The convoy to the fence is accompanied by armed Christian Arabs who stand guard on the Lebanese side. The patients are usually treated then sent back home, but those who are seriously ill are admitted to Israeli hospitals. Initially the patients were timid about crossing the border for treatment but those who have already been, are telling others that they came to no harm.