COVID-19 Information

Kent Hospital Staff Come Together to Aid Humanitarian Crisis in Syria and Turkey

(Warwick, RI) – Kent Hospital healthcare workers are partnering with international organizations to help respond to the humanitarian crisis in Turkey and Syria after devastating earthquakes have left over forty-six thousand people dead, and tens of thousands injured, amid crumbling infrastructure. 


Kent Hospital’s Drs. Jinen Thakkar, Laura Forman, Hadeel Zainah, and Mery Deeb, are leading Kent Hospital’s efforts to collaborate with colleagues across the state and the nation to leverage critical resources purchased by area hospitals and through generous donations.

The earthquakes have left many without critical food, water, and medical supplies. 

“Kent Hospital is working with the Patriarchate Relief Authority Taskforce of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch (GOPA), in the Patriarchal Holy Monastery of Our Lady of Balamand. Once we collect desperately needed supplies, the humanitarian aid will be flown via cargo jet to Beirut airport, after which it will be delivered to Archimandrite Meletius Shattahi, who is the director of the Department of Ecumenical Relations and Development (DERD) in Syria. To those affected by the earthquakes, these supplies can be lifesaving. I want to make sure we do everything we can to help our brothers and sisters overseas who are suffering,” said Thakkar, who is an internist at Kent Hospital.

Forman has participated in global disaster relief efforts before, including in Central America, Bosnia, Croatia, and Madagascar.

“I am glad to know that so many from Rhode Island are jumping in to help, especially here at Kent Hospital. I know what it’s like to work with little to no supplies in devastating conditions, so I’m aware how appreciative the people of Syria and Turkey will be to receive any supplies we’re able to provide,” said Laura Forman, MD, Emergency Medicine, Kent Hospital. 

This is not the first time Kent Hospital has come to the aid of those in need. In May of 2021, Drs. Thakkar and Forman organized an India relief effort when that country was being ravaged by COVID-19. Kent collected $2 million of in-kind medical supplies and $85,000 in cash donations to support the packaging and transfer of items to India for COVID relief.  


At the present time, Turkey and Syria are in need of medical and surgical supplies. 

The area is also in dire need of baby formula for term and preterm neonates, diapers, sheets, tents, sanitary products, canned food, and air mattresses. 

For more information about how you can make a donation of in-kind supplies, please contact Kate Wishart, Major Gifts Officer, Kent Hospital, at (401) 737-7010 (x31134) or to arrange a drop-off. Or conveniently donate online by visiting 

About Kent Hospital
Kent Hospital, a Care New England hospital, is a 359-bed, acute care hospital. It is Rhode Island’s second-largest hospital, serving approximately 300,000 residents of central Rhode Island.  A teaching affiliate of The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine and The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Kent offers programs in emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, and in hyperbaric medicine, and gastroenterology. Kent’s Emergency Department (ED) sees approximately 70,000 patients a year and ranks Kent’s ED volume among the top 10 percent nationally. Kent Hospital is one of four hospitals in Rhode Island to perform emergency angioplasty and the only one south of Providence to do so. Kent’s cardiology program and some surgical services are provided locally through a long-standing clinical affiliation with Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Same-day surgery is performed in the state-of-the-art Ambulatory Surgery Center located on the second floor of the Ambulatory Services Pavilion, while patients can access an array of medical professionals on the first floor, medical office building.