Palestinian political prisoner Yousry el-Masri, 30, from Gaza, is suffering from cancer of the thyroid after years of deliberate medical negligence, reported Palestinian Prisoners Society lawyer Shereen Nasser after a visit to Ramle prison clinic.
In two years in Nafha prison, el-Masri suffered from pain in his abdomen, severe headache, hot flashes and sweating; blood tests were conducted, yet he received only painkillers for treatment of what was actually thyroid cancer.
El-Masri said that this was part of a policy of medical neglect against prisoners that dismisses prisoners’ pain and suffering and refuses to provide appropriate medical testing, examination or treatment.
El-Masri was finally sent to Soroka hospital after severe deterioration in his health, where a tumor was discovered in his thyroid and enlarged lymph nodes. It took several months to receive approval for surgery to remove his thyroid. He was kept shackled despite his surgery and severe illness during his recovery.
Nasser said that El-Masri reported that the prison administration transferred the doctor and clinic director from Nafha prison, saying that this took place due to their responsibility for his health condition and suffering. El-Masri said that the prison authorities handle prisoners’ health isues with careles indifference. El-Masri is now awaiting proper treatment and chemotherapy.