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Gaza's cancer patients suffer due to siege, division

The political division between Gaza and Ramallah, in addition to the Israeli-Egyptian blockade, is leaving cancer patients in the Gaza Strip without adequate medical care.
Suhad al-Katib, a Palestinian woman patient who suffers cancer sits inside her house after she was not allowed to enter Israel, in Gaza City February 12, 2014. Israel has denied entry permits to some 50 Palestinian medical patients from the Gaza Strip because the words "State of Palestine" appears on the letterhead of their application, officials said on Wednesday. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem (GAZA - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST HEALTH) - RTX18O7O
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GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Nasser al-Sadek was standing, about four months ago, in his electric appliances store in the town of Jabaliya in the north of the Gaza Strip, when he felt a sharp pain in his chest. He visited a doctor at the hospital who gave him medication for inflammation, but the pain persisted. He returned to the doctor, who conducted tests to reveal the presence of tumors inside his lungs, which, analysis proved, were cancerous.

Doctors at the Shifa Hospital in the Gaza Strip decided to transfer Sadek, 44, to an Israeli hospital to complete the required tests and receive chemotherapy, because Shifa lacked the facilities to diagnose and treat the disease. After receiving an appointment from the Israeli hospital, as per the relevant procedures, he submitted an application to the Civil Affairs Committee for permission to enter Israel.

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