In a post on social network X, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) warned of the “growing threat of infectious diseases” in the Gaza Strip. He said that WHO staff on the ground were working daily on controlling and monitoring these infections.

The WHO chief said on Friday that he was “very concerned” about the growing threat posed by infectious diseases in the Gaza Strip, since the Israeli offensive in response to the October 7 Hamas attack.

“As people continue to be massively displaced in southern Gaza, with some families forced to move several times and many taking shelter in overcrowded health facilities, my WHO colleagues and I remain very concerned about the growing threat of infectious diseases,” said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, on the social network X (ex-Twitter).

“From mid-October to mid-December, people living in shelters continued to fall ill,” he added.

Dr. Tedros said nearly 180,000 people were suffering from upper respiratory infections, while 136,400 cases of diarrhea were recorded, half of them in children under five.

The head of the UN health agency added that there had been 55,400 cases of lice and scabies, 5,330 cases of chickenpox, and 42,700 cases of rashes, including 4,722 of impetigo.

“WHO and its partners are working tirelessly to help health authorities increase disease surveillance and control by providing medicines and test kits, to detect and provide rapid responses to infectious diseases such as hepatitis, and by trying to improve access to drinking water, food and hygiene,” added Mr. Tedros.