The current coronavirus wave in Israel is striking the young and healthy, especially pregnant women. Tragically, there are currently ten Chareidi pregnant women hospitalized in critical condition due to the coronavirus, with most of them hooked up to ventilators shortly after arriving at the hospital. At least four women underwent emergency C-sections, with one baby dying two days later and the others in serious condition.
There are also more and more reports of young people becoming seriously ill due to the virus, including a 17-year-old yeshivah bochur and a two-year-old, who are currently hospitalized and receiving respiratory assistance after contracting the virus.
Chaya Rivka Pollack, a 35-year-old resident of Jerusalem with no preexisting medical conditions, contracted the virus in the 31st week of her pregnancy and is currently in critical condition in Beilinson Hospital in Petach Tikvah, sedated and ventilated. The doctors are also fighting to save the life of her baby, who was delivered by emergency C-section.
“Her condition is critical and unstable,” said Dr. Ilya Kagan, director of the coronavirus ICU unit at Beilinson. “We are fighting for her life, which is in real danger.”
Her name for tefillah is Chaya Rivka bas Leah. Her baby, Tinok ben Chaya Leah, is also in need of tefillos. (See below for full list of names for tefillos.)
Another two women were hospitalized in serious condition in Laniado Hospital in Netanya, One of them underwent an emergency C-section and is now sedated and ventilated in the coronavirus ICU unit. The second woman was transferred to Sheba Hospital in Tel HaShomer following a deterioration in her condition and is currently conscious but in serious condition and receiving respiratory assistance.
Another four women, all suffering from respiratory distress, are hospitalized in Mayanei HaYeshua Hospital in Bnei Brak.
YWN previously reported on yet another heartrending case of a Jerusalem mother of six hospitalized in critical condition in Beilinson Hospital.
Dr. Yael Haviv, the director of the coronavirus ICU unit at Sheba, said: “In the course of this wave, we’re encountering more and more incidents of young people becoming seriously ill or even critically ill from the coronavirus. This isn’t an illness of elderly people with pre-existing conditions anymore.”
Coronavirus czar Prof. Nachman Ash said on Army Radio on Tuesday morning: “We’re evaluating whether the increased morbidity among pregnant women is a new phenomenon or there is a common denominator of vulnerability among these women. We’re also examining the possibility of a link to the [British] mutation.”
Prof. Galia Rahav, Director of the Infectious Diseases Research Laboratory at Sheba Medical Center, told Yediot Achronot: “These women are having severe breathing difficulties. Some of them are from Chareidi centers. We need to consider vaccinating pregnant women in areas with high morbidity, definitely when they are in the advanced stages of pregnancy.”
“We didn’t see this during the previous waves. It’s possible it’s linked to the mutation.”
Unfortunately, the infection rate in the Chareidi sector has soared and is currently five times higher than the general population.
The Israel Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology sent a letter to the Health Ministry on Monday requesting that the ministry approve vaccinations for pregnant and nursing women.
“There is no scientific basis or facts that indicate infertility as a result of the vaccine,” the society wrote. “Coronavirus can be harmful during pregnancy, causing more serious illness and premature birth.”
Prof. Yariv Yogev, director of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department at Sheba Hospital, said earlier this month during the annual Puah Institute conference that pregnant women should get vaccinated, especially if they have any risk factors.
A list of women and newborn babies in need of tefillos:
- Chaya Rivka bas Leah and her baby, Tinok ben Chaya Rivka.
- Rochel Naomi bas Esther Chana and Tinok ben Rochel Naomi – A 33-year-old resident of the Ramot neighborhood of Jerusalem, mother of five.
- Chana bas Bella Hadassah – A 38-year-old resident of Modiin Illit, mother of five.
- Yehudis Miriam bas Chana Gittel – a 37-year-old resisdent of Bnei Brak.
- Chedva bas Rochel
- Tamar bas Esther Rivka
- Sasha Bracha bas Leah Rivka
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)