__ v _* — • THE CABE OF OUR GALLANT WOUNDED. (Br H. T. Fkbeab, M.A., F.G.S., late of the Egyptian Civil Service.) [All Rights Reserved.) Before the outbreak of war there were a certain number of European hospitals in Egypt. These were either tho military hospitals for the British Army of Occupation and the Egyptian Army, or they were civil hospitals maintained by the civil communities of the different nationalities in such towns as Cairo and Alexandria, Port Said, and Suez. All these are now being utilised by the British military authorities in order that those members of the New Zealand and Australian forces who have been wounded in the. recent fighting at the Dardanelles may have proper care and treatment. In addition to those hospitals already established in Egypt, several have been improvised owing to tho ereat number of casualties. These temporary hospitals are but briefly notified in the cablegrams which we receive, but an intimate knowledge of the country enables mc to identify them and to supply a short description, which must be of interest to those who have wounded friends or relatives undergoing hospital treatment in Egypt. The Abbassia Hospital was bujlt by the British Government to provide additional hospital accommodation for the Army of Occupation. It is a sand-brick building, constructed on approved and up-to-date lines, and is situated in the desert, a few miles east of Cairo, near the disused overland post-road to Suez. This hospital is one iif the buildings which constitute the new Abbassia Barracks, where some of the British troops are quartered. Having thick masonry walls, it is warm in winter and cool in summer. It is protected by vride verandahs from excess of sun and dust-laden wind, and ita windows.. fitted with metallic gauze screens, do not allow the ingress of flies or mosquitoes. Thus Aβ in this hospital are not placed beneath mosquito nets, and probably are as comfortable here as in any other hospital in Egypt. All the doctors belong to the Royal Army Medical Corps, the nurses are certificated Army nurses, and the chambermaids' work is done by black boys from Upper Egypt. The Anglo-American Hospital, situated on an island (gezira) in the Nile, opposite Cairo, is a private hospital, maintained by voluntary subscriptions from the English and American residents, and by donations from British and other visitors during the winter tourist season. The medical staff inpludes British doctors, both in the Egyptian Government service and in private practice. The nursing staff are ladies recruited, usually from the larger London hospitals. Aβ before, the housemaids , work is done by Berberine boys from Upper . Egypt. The building was divided into two wings, one for ladies and the other for Anglo-Saxons in commerce in Cairo or in tho Civil Service. It is a masonry building with a wide verandah on its north or windward side, and its windows are fitted with metallic gauze mosquito screens. It possesses an operating • theatre, and its rooms were designed 6o that usually each patient had a room to herself or himself, but in times of stress two or, more patients were placed in the earn© room. The writer of this article can vouch for its comfort, having been an inmate there on four different occasions. The Citadel Hospital is part of the fort built by Salah-el-Din (Saladin) on a spur of the Moqattam Hills, overlooking Cairo. Being high up, it is well ventilated and as it has proved a satisfactory hospital for a number of years it is bound to possess all modern conveniences. Formerly, it was used exclusively by that regiment of the Army of Occupation which happened to be quartered in the- citadel J but now its use has been extended so as to provide accommodation for New Zealand and other wounded soldiers. The medical and nursing staffs are, like those at tho Abbassia Hospital, members of the Royal Army Medical Corps. The Deaconess' Hospital (Cairo) is a well-equipped hospital near the Nile, in the European quarter of Cairo, and is one of the permanent civil hospitals mentioned above. This hospital is used occasionally by British residents, but, as a rule, the inmates here are. subjects of one or other of the great European Powers. The nurses here are trained Sisters of Mercy, and the hospital is highly commended by any British residents who have been there. Gezira Palace was a Khedival palace, and afterwards a large and" fashionable hotel when the war broke out. It is a fine masonry building situated on the island (Gesira) in the* Nile opposite Cairo. It stands on the riverbank, and is surrounded by its own grounds, which abut on the polo ground and racecourse of the British residents' sports club, the Khedivial Sporting Club. Tho houses in the vicinity are occupied by the more prominent residents of Cairo, and in short, the vicinity is ideal, especially from the point ' of view of a wounded soldier. Having been an hotel, there will be many conveniences hero which could not be found in other of the improvised hospitals. This one may be what has been called Australian General Hospital No. 11. Gezira, the Ghezires (sic) Hospital of the cablegrams, and if this is* so the professional staff will be drawn from the ranks of the Australian Army Medical Corps. Heliopolis Hotel likewise may be another name for the West Australian General Hospital No. I. (There are at least twenty-ono improvised military hospitals, and it will be some time before the cablegrams allow of their identification.) The Heliopolis Hotel is a magnificent sand-brick building in the new desert suburb of that name, and is within a mile of the New Zealanders , first Egyptian canip at Zeitoun... The hotel was sumptuously furnished, a nd could accommodate a thousand guests. Since the building has been equipped as an hotel it is certain that there will bo a great number o f well-sprung beds available, and that the culinary and other conveniences will be adequate to the present requirements. The spacious gardens will enable those men whom it is possible to move to breathe the pure air of the desert and hence make rapid recovery. Kasr el Ami Hospital is one of the Egyptian Government hospitals under tho Public Health Department. The director, the resident physician, tho resident surgeon, and the nurses aro Englisli. but since this hospital was also a medical school for local students, somo of the staff are Egyptians, who, however, usually "hold diplomas obtained in : Europe. It is probable that the native ! section of the hospital remains unj changed, and that the lecture rooms and I laboratories of the students have been
converted into wards for our wounded. These lecture rooms form open quadrangles, into which the prevailing broeW from the Mediterranean sea find easy ingress. The windows and doors are provided with gauie mosquitoscreens. The hospital is situated near the Nile, and half a mile to the Bouth of General kaxweU's house and the British Residency. ■ m •■ Luna Park. Cairo's "White City," with skating rink, switchback railway et cetera, is situated a few h^drod > yards from theHeliopohs Hotel. Photographs of the interior of this property published in the "Weekly Press" of July 6th showed that the beds provided here are made from the split midribs of date-palm leaves. buch beds, cull angareeb, are very comfortable, for tho flexibility of the woody hbres and the absence of nao joints, allow 1 tho mattress to "e l ™' beneath the weight of the body. They ar 0 prae- • ticallv basket or wicker-work stretchers and British residents often use them as spare beck or as verandah settees. It that only minor wounds will ■ bo treated in this improvised Hospital. Pont do Kubba (or Koubbeh) is a i suburb of Cairo on the now well known Zeitoun railway lino. There are many huge blocks of residential flats in this : district, and it is likely that ono of • those buildings has been converted into i a temporary hospital. If this is not so i the only other suitable building in the locality*is the old Abbassia Observatory, ' formerly a Khedivial palace. This ' building is surrounded by a high wall and the garden so enclosed would secure . quiet resting places for those whose wounds allowed them some freedom of action. - Mena House, the last of the Cairo ' hospitals , specified in the cablegrams, was an hotel, but on tho arrival of the . Australian Field Force it was converted , into their base hospital. It is situated on the edge of the "Libyan desert at the end of the Pyramids tramline, and beneath the shadow of the Great Pyra- ' mid. It is connected to Cairo by both ■ telephone and telegraph wires. Tt is probable that this hospital has been maintained continuously under the Australian Army Medical Corps. Havine been used as an hospital for porno six ' months prior to the attack on Gallipoli , Peninsula, all shortcomings will have been remedied and extra comforts will have bpen provided ere the first wotrnd--1 pd soldiers" returned from the firing- • line. ALEXANDRIA. 1 Seven hospitals in Alexandria have i been - mentioned by name, but as yet ■ no reference has been made to some seventeen Military Hospitals, namely, those numbered 111. to XVIII. and No. ■ XX. No doubt many of these are ■ placed in Alexandria and reserved main- . ly for the wounded British, Indian, and , French troops. Alexandria is a noted ( health resort and is the seat of Govern- . ment during the Egyptian summer. The proximity of the sea renders its tern• porature more equable than that of . Cairo. Aβ in Cairo, so in Alexandria, i convalescent cases win find many residents rendy to offer the hospitality of their homes until their names are re- ■ moved from the eick list. AH the 1 suburban portion of this city stands on its north.-east.side. upon a ridge of soft • limestone rock. Tho cultivated delta of th 0 Nile, here mainly market gardens, extends along tho south side of this ridge, while on the north side the sea provides one long succession of delight ful bathing beaches. An asphalted i carriage road bordered by ehady trees and an efficient electric tram service, the Alexandria. Ramleh Railway; con- ' nects these suburbs with one another and with the centre of th c city. Glymenopoulo, one of these suburban > districts, lies quite near Alexandria, and is characterised by the number of great houses which are divided into residential flats. It is probably one of these spacious buildings which has been oon--1 verted into a temporary hospital, i Ras el Tin Military Hospital is situ- , ated near the terminus of ,the Ramleh; tram, line at Ras el Tin, the Cape of ' Figs. The building is probably what ' was the summer palace of the ex- • Khedive Abbas 11., pictures of which ■ may be seen on the new issue of the i Egyptian three-mi)liene stamps. As it is built on the very sea front, and; some ' distance from any other large fetruc- ' tures, it will form an almost ideal hospital. Of course, the large halls it is i bound to contain will entail large wards, i which may not be as comfortable as smaller wards containing fewer beds. Ramleh Casino and San Stefano I Casino are probably one and the same 1 hospital. Ramleh, the fashionable resii dential suburb of, Alexandria, adjoins i ban eJtetano, with its Casino and other seaside attractions. In reality the i 'Casino is a large hotel on the sea front, and is noted tor its enclosed swimming ', bath. Convalescent men will find this establishment has more attractions than '. other hospitals less favourably situated. i Alexandria Hospital, perhaps identical with Military General Hospital No. XXI., like Kasv el Ami, is an Egyptian '. Government hospital and school of medicine under the Public Health Dβ- ' partment. Ita staff will v bo mainly British, and it will be well equipped | with medical stores. ; Deaconess , Hospital, also called Mili--1 tary Hospital No.- XIX., needs little ' further notice than to .say that it is un- ' der the same administration as the Deaconess' Hospital, Cairo. The Sisters of ■ Mercy in both establishments aro I usually of Austrian or German nation- ; ality. '• The Greek Hospital is maintained by ' the Greek community of Alexandria, which is richer and. in point of view of ' numbers, is greater than that of any i other of the European communities 1 which inhabit this city. The hospital is ; bound to be well appointed, and except ■ for the food, which may be prepared in .a manner too nearly resembling Nea- , politan for our* Pastes, the patients here . should have all the comforts they re-r quire. I Before concluding these notes on the . hospital accommodation in Egypt, it . may be of interest to record that the i lied Cross ship Goorka, which traris- | ports the wounded from Gallipoli to 1 Alexandria, is one of the ships of tho r Union Castle Line fleet. This line of J steamers carries the mails and passengers between Southampton and tho . South African ports. The ships are all ; well found, and in some cases the acr cemmodation is luxurious. Relations I and friends may therefore rest assured [ that our wounded will have the best possible care and attention during the j two or three days' voyage across the Mediterranean.
Permanent link to this item
Press, Press, Volume LI, Issue 15344, 30 July 1915
"EGYPTIAN" HOSPITALS. Press, Volume LI, Issue 15344, 30 July 1915
Using This Item
Fairfax Media is the copyright owner for the Press. You can reproduce in-copyright material from this newspaper for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons New Zealand BY-NC-SA licence. This newspaper is not available for commercial use without the consent of Fairfax Media. For advice on reproduction of out-of-copyright material from this newspaper, please refer to the Copyright guide.
This newspaper was digitised in partnership with Christchurch City Libraries (1921-1945).