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    Holocaust survivor, 99, recovers from COVID-19; her husband died from it

Holocaust survivor, 99, recovers from COVID-19; her husband died from it

Sara Itzinger, whose husband Zvi Herschel was virus victim, hailed by MDA paramedic grandson as a ‘strong, surviving woman’; couple met in the US after WWII

A 99-year-old woman who survived the Holocaust has now also overcome the COVID-19 illness after a month of hospitalization, Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center confirmed Monday.

“Thank you everyone, I just want to get home,” said Sara Itzinger after being discharged from the hospital, the Ynet news site reported.

[Read full article at The Times of Israel]

By |May 12th, 2020|News|Comments Off on Holocaust survivor, 99, recovers from COVID-19; her husband died from it|
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    Tamar Kirschenbaum – selected as one of fifteen outstanding nurses across Israel

Tamar Kirschenbaum – selected as one of fifteen outstanding nurses across Israel

Congratulations to Tamar Kirschenbaum who was chosen by the Ministry of Health as one of fifteen Outstanding Nurses selected from across the country in honor of International Nurse’s Week.
Tamar has been working at Shaare Zedek for the past six years, four of them in our Zvi and Betty Ryzman Family Intensive Care Unit (ICU). Most recently, Tamar has been working in Shaare Zedek special Keter ICU for treating coronavirus patients.

Tamar shared, “I chose to become a nurse because I wanted a profession that was interesting and satisfying. I enjoy working in the ICU where the patients are highly complex and the nurse to patient ratio is much lower than in other departments (one to two). In addition, the staff is highly knowledgeable and skilled and my boss, Chaya Broyer is the type of boss everyone would like to work for…Shaare Zedek is where I was born and in the hospital there is a real feeling of a warm family and it makes me feel good to be part of that family.”

With regard to the award Tamar shared, “I dedicate this certificate of honor to the patients, for whom we have the responsibility and the privilege to play a significant part in advancing their physical and mental health during their difficult times and in honor of their families who face boundless worries and fear of the unknown and who need a shoulder to lean on and guidance…I am proud to be a nurse in Israel and in a hospital where nurses are a significant and inseparable part of optimal patient care.”

Ms. Gali Weiss, the Deputy Director General and Head Nurse of Shaare Zedek Medical Center said, “Tamar reflects the spirit of nursing at the Shaare more >

By |May 12th, 2020|News|Comments Off on Tamar Kirschenbaum – selected as one of fifteen outstanding nurses across Israel|

I Know why the Coronavirus ward dances

This wonderful article from the Times of Israelhighlights the supportive and compassionate culture at Shaare Zedek.

In Shaare Zedek Medical Center’s first isolation wards for treating coronavirus patients, Keter Unit 1 and 2, there were good vibes.

Yep, that’s right. Good vibes.

Even during moments of tremendous stress, when the number of patients skyrocketed and the outlook felt bleak, the Keter team — nurses and doctors, cleaners and physiotherapists, social workers and Sherut Leumi (National Service) volunteers, interns and receptionists, orderlies and nursing assistants, security, nursing students, and dietitians — found ways to support each other. They rallied around their coworkers, and very quickly, became a family.

[Read full article at The Times of Israel]

By |May 10th, 2020|News|Comments Off on I Know why the Coronavirus ward dances|

Zoom Corona Update – April 30

Listen to the update from Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem with Dr. Ofer Merin and Professor Jonathan Halevy as they shared stories from the Keter Ward and answered questions.

User 699337879 · Corona Update 30 April 2020

By |April 28th, 2020|News|Comments Off on Zoom Corona Update – April 30|

A Different Yom Haatzmaut

This year, the ceremonies for Yom Haatzmaut have been quite different. During the ceremony broadcast from Mt. Herzl last night, many missed the traditional drill exercises performed by soldiers bearing the flags of various IDF, police and fire and rescue services units when the soldiers create different structures of well-known symbols.

Thank you to the skilled and compassionate nurses of our Zvi and Betty Ryzman Family Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for this wonderful clip where they form an EKG to the song traditionally played during this part of the ceremony, Zemer ha’Plugot.

Happy Yom Haatzmaut!


Video credit: Tal Heres

By |April 25th, 2020|News|Comments Off on A Different Yom Haatzmaut|

An Update from the Hospital

Dear Friends,

Like everyone around the globe we are trying to establish some form of normalcy in an abnormal situation.

As tonight marks the beginning of Yom Hashoah let us remember that we have been through far more difficult and traumatic times in history. Life is stronger than anything else and hopefully all of us will soon be able to assume some form of a more regular lifestyle.

Below please find the latest update from Shaare Zedek.

Rachel Wolf

Pesach at the hospital was certainly unique and challenging. As you can see from the photos, we succeeded in getting the hospital ready for the holiday, as always. This year, this included individual Seder Plates for every patient throughout the Medical Center – in place of the central gatherings in each department which we hosted in years past. And no shortage of Matzoh Balls…

As you are likely aware, and we have had the chance to discuss in past updates and our Zoom briefing, Israel has been largely successful in preventing the outbreak from consuming the healthcare system. While there sadly have been over 170 deaths to date, we know that this number pales in comparison to the devastating rates seen in other countries. We know that this is in large part due to the early and comprehensive action that Israel took in closing borders and imposing distancing restrictions.

In terms of our activities, Shaare Zedek remains the most active hospital for Corona response in the Jerusalem area. As of today (Sunday), we are treating 92 patients in the hospital, out of which 35 are listed in serious condition. We maintain six individual Keter (Corona) Wards and a dedicated ICU just for COVID- 19 cases. These numbers confirm that indeed the curve is more >

By |April 20th, 2020|News|Comments Off on An Update from the Hospital|

Wishing You A Pesach Of Healing and Redemption

Dear Friends,

We are all experiencing a different kind of Pesach this year. It may not be what any of us had planned, but we hope it will be meaningful and inspirational.

During these days of uncertainty, we are proud that Shaare Zedek has risen to the occasion and is serving as a beacon of hope, healing and compassion to the people of Jerusalem and the world at large.

Click here to listen to yesterday’s informative and inspiring briefing delivered via Zoom by our Director-General Prof. Ofer Merin and President Prof. Jonathan Halevy.
Click here to listen to Rachel Gemara, a nurse in our Keter Corona Department, who was interviewed by our good friend Nachum Segal on his broadcast this morning. Thank you Rachel for your dedication, sensitivity and optimism.

Please accept our warm wishes for a Chag Kasher V’Sameach, and most importantly, may it be one of health for you and your families.

Rachel Wolf
Howie Goldschmidt
The Entire Shaare Zedek Family

By |April 8th, 2020|News|Comments Off on Wishing You A Pesach Of Healing and Redemption|

Family Zoom with Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter

A special Zoom session with our esteemed Rabbi and friend Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter who delivered a class titled Servitude and Redemption: The Dialectic of the Seder in Complex Times.

By |April 2nd, 2020|News|Comments Off on Family Zoom with Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter|
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    Shabbat Shalom from Shaare Zedek Director-General Prof. Ofer Merin

Shabbat Shalom from Shaare Zedek Director-General Prof. Ofer Merin

Shaare Zedek Director-General Voices Cautious Optimism Over Virus Statistics
The number of patients is doubling every three days, notes Shaare Zedek’s Ofer Merin, ‘but the number of critically ill patients, especially those dying, is quite low at this time’
Although there is a sharp rise in the number of coronavirus deaths and diagnoses in Israel, the statistics actually give rise to cautious optimism, a hospital director has suggested.
Ofer Merin, Director General of Shaare Zedek Medical Center, indicated that if hospitals continue along the current trajectory they could see a lower fatality rate from the virus than in some other countries. “I am not sure that in every country it behaves in the same way,” he said, discussing the virus.

Israel didn’t have a single coronavirus fatality before the weekend but has now seen five (two of them since Merin made his comments Tuesday), and doctors expect to see several more this week. The number of diagnosed has risen sharply to 2,369, of which 37 are in serious condition.

“What we can say in general in Israel, is that the number of patients is doubling every three days, around the same as Europe. But, the number of critically ill patients, especially those dying, is quite low at this time,” Merin said.

He stressed that Israel is at “a very early stage,” and his comments should be taken in this context.

Merin made his observations in a webinar titled “The Corona Wakeup Call: Innovation and Startups,” organized by the Israel-based investment company Jerusalem Venture Partners.

Eran Zehavy, Chief Innovation Coordinator at the Israel Institute of Biological Research, also voiced optimism in the webinar about research that could combat the virus.

“Major goals are to develop a vaccine and a neutralizing antibody that could be more >

By |March 27th, 2020|News|Comments Off on Shabbat Shalom from Shaare Zedek Director-General Prof. Ofer Merin|

My Heart is Broken

Dear Friends,

It is almost incomprehensible to think that it’s been only a week since we last updated you.
Beyond our hospital having been forced to change in countless ways that we will elaborate upon below, the entire world has been transformed.

Today, recognizing the enormity of our challenge, Shaare Zedek’s principle focus is now firmly on corona preparedness and response and investing for what lies ahead.

As of this morning, we have 21 corona patients hospitalized and we continue to project that the number of serious cases will rise considerably in the days ahead. We have already created a Corona B Unit adjacent to Corona A with an additional 25 beds. A Corona ICU Unit has been prepared with 12 dedicated stations. We also have over 200 staff members in isolation and 3 of our colleagues diagnosed with Covid-19.

The stark reality of what we are facing became ever clearer on Friday evening when Shaare Zedek experienced Israel’s first direct loss of life from this pandemic. Aryeh Even z”l, 88 years old with many background diseases was a Holocaust survivor and a member of our nation’s founding generation. While our staff worked tirelessly to stabilize his condition, pre-existing complications compounded with this relentless virus resulted in this sad outcome.

Below, please find a moving testimony written by a nurse in the Corona Unit.

We also share with you the description from our senior nurse Levi Levin who appeared on television speaking of his interaction with one of the seriously ill patients. “Three times in one-night shift, after observing a patient struggling to remove his breathing apparatus, together with the assistance of my fellow staff members, I donned my full protective gear, received approval from the immunologist and dashed into the treatment more >

By |March 23rd, 2020|News|Comments Off on My Heart is Broken|