Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) – Israel Branch, warned that the health condition of Thaer Halahla and Bilal Thiab, who entered their 63rd day of hunger strike is causing grave concern, adding that both detainees suffer from an acute decrease of muscle tone and are bedridden, which puts them under dual threat; muscle atrophy and thrombophilia, which can lead to a fatal blood clot.A PHR doctor managed to visit Thaer and Bilal, and stated that their lives are in danger, and require immediate transfer to hospital, and that such specialized care is not provided at the prison clinic..
PHR said that the Israeli Prison Service launched a campaign meant to force the detainees to break their hunger strike, and took measures that put the lives of hunger-striking detainees in danger. These measures include:
– Denying family visitations to the striking detainees that could provide emotional support to the detainees.
– Denying the detainees access to professional medical attention. Detainees on hunger strike need to be in hospitals that have professional capacity that would be able to help them.
– Denying the detainees the right to be regularly seen by PHR independent physicians they can trust, who can provide the striking detainees consultation and accurate information they can trust.
PHR Israel said that as hunger-strikers are blocked from any all contact with the outside world, a measure meant to break their nonviolent struggle. “It is alarming to see that medical professionalism and ethics are severely compromised, and lives are put at risk for political aims”.
The medical condition of Bilal and Thaer, based on PHR-Israel’s doctor visit of April 30th, as stated by PHR-Israel:
-Both detainees suffer from acute muscle weakness in their limbs, which prevents them from standing.
-Both are in need of full assistance in daily activities such showering, as such help is not provided in the IPS clinic.
-Both detainees suffer from an acute decrease of muscle tone and are bedridden, which puts them under dual threat; muscle atrophy and thrombophilia, which can lead to a fatal blood clot.
Thiab is in a life threatening state; he suffers from:
– Sharp weight loss
– Paresthesia in his limbs, which along with other indicators raises concern of peripheral nerve damage.
– His pulse is down to 39, his blood pressure has dropped to 80/40.
– He is dehydrated and is in danger of life threatening arrhythmia.
– He reported stomach pain and there is suspicion of internal bleeding.
PHR-Israel’s physician recommended an immediate transfer to a hospital and full heart monitoring.
The medical condition of Thaer Halahla:
– Sharp weight loss.
– Pain in the left side of the upper back, which along with a low erythrocyte sedimentation rate may indicate inflammation of the pleura or even a blood clot, which can be lethal without proper medical attention.
PHR-Israel’s physicians determined that a CT (Computed Tomography) of the lung was urgently needed to rule out pleurisy or a blood clot. Without CTs at the IPS medical facility, the physician recommended an immediate transfer to a hospital for further examination.