72. Giacaman, R., Lock, K., and Salem, H. Geriatrics in Perspective, A Review of Geriatric Services in the West Bank. Birzeit: Birzeit University Community Health Unit, 1991: 20 pp.

A review of geriatric services in the West Bank and Gaza Strip is presented. Twenty-three old people's homes and institutions caring for the elderly are found in the West Bank and three in the Gaza Strip. More than half of these institutions is located in the central region of the West Bank. This reflects poor services in the northern and southern regions of the country. Only one percent of the total population of the old people are served in these institutions while the large majority are being cared for in their homes.

The conditions in these institutions are described and major problems of the residents highlighted. The report describes criteria for admission to the institutions, payment schedules, sources of funding, employees, physical facilities and problems that they face. Institutions mostly lack the adequate medical, psychological and social services for the elderly and a charitable inhumane abusive approach prevails.

The authors recommend a community home-based approach to elderly care as being more appropriate for local needs. This approach includes providing health, social, psychological and sanitation services to the elderly in their homes or in day care centers within their communities. Another recommendation is to upgrade institutions currently housing the elderly.