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One dentist recently set up a tent to offer dental care.

Finding relief in a dental clinic in a tent in the sand in Gaza

April 2, 2024
When he realized the extent of those suffering from oral complications in Gaza, Dr. Najdat Saqer retrieved what he could of his dental equipment and got to work.
Meg Kaiser, Associate Editor

Of the news reports from Gaza, there has been some sporadic information about dentists and dental clinics. The October 7 invasion of Israel that led to Israel’s retaliation and the displacement of millions of Gazans has left many of them suffering from oral complications, among their many other miseries.

One dentist recently did something about the dental problems and took action. When the bombing began, Dr.  Najdat Saqer, 32, had to leave his dental clinic behind, like so many of his peers. The neighborhood where his clinic was located in central Gaza was “targeted many times” in various attacks, he said, and he had to abandon it.

While many of his fellow dentists fled the area in the following months, Dr. Saqer eventually went back to his clinic to rescue what equipment he could. He did this when he realized how many around him were suffering with oral complications, but with medical care severely limited, they had nowhere to go for their dental pain.

So, Dr. Saqer recently re-erected his dental clinic in Nuseirat, in a tent in the sand covered in a plastic sheet, complete with his framed dental credentials on the “walls.” He transported what he could via a rickshaw and got the clinic up and running in the tent. Now, despite the low availability of water and electricity, Dr. Saqer has started to offer dental care to his fellow Gazans in an effort to relieve at least one of their many burdens.

He’s reported to have a calming presence in the midst of the chaos, and his patients leave feeling better, and with a bit more faith in their fellow man.

Read more about Dr. Saqer and his heroic efforts

There have also been reports of volunteer efforts from the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, including this special clinic in central Gaza Strip, and this effort to help children with special needs.