The American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC) is the largest private hospital in Beirut. It and other private hospitals in Lebanon provide 85 percent of healthcare in the country. Within minutes of the explosion in the Beirut port on August 4, 2020, its doctors, nurses, and medical staff were heading to the Emergency Department to prepare to care for the injured. In the first twenty-four hours, more than 500 casualties were treated at the medical center.
A 2020 grant from the Cultures of Resistance Network supported AUBMC’s Disaster Response Fund, helping pay for the care of needy patients and repair damage sustained during the August 4 explosion. Although AUBMC was damaged, other hospitals closer to the site of the explosion fared much worse. Four hospitals had to evacuate their patients. The cost to repair the hospitals damaged by the explosion exceeded $150 million. AUBMC worked closely with colleagues at other hospitals in Beirut that sustained serious damage to help care for their patients.