On Thursday 9 Cheshvan, twenty shift managers from United Hatzalah dispatch centers around the country visited Yad Sarah’s Jerusalem headquarters to gain a better understanding of their operation. The meeting came ahead of the increase in collaboration that has been planned between the two organizations. Orchestrated by Nachum Gitman, Director of the Home Hospitalization Service and the Emergency Response Center for Yad Sarah, the goal of the meeting was to allow educators and dispatch operators from United Hatzalah to gain a better understanding of Yad Sarah’s Emergency Response Center.
“We are well aware of the life-saving work that United Hatzalah does. Whenever we have an emergency call come in, we immediately dispatch their volunteers at the same time that we inform the ambulance services. They came to get a better feel for how we operate in order to build closer ties between our two organizations, which will enable us to respond faster and save more lives,” Gitman said.
Yad Sarah is Israel’s largest volunteer based organization and provides a spectrum of free or nominal cost services designed to make life easier for sick, disabled and elderly people and their families. Among the many programs that Yad Sarah runs is the emergency response program that distributes panic buttons to ill and elderly people at risk.
Gitman also stated that United Hatzalah dispatch managers will begin to take part in the education of new dispatchers for Yad Sarah. “Next month we are beginning our newest course for emergency dispatchers. As part of the course, United Hatzalah operators will be instructing our dispatchers how to better respond to urgent calls and give instructions to the caller over the phone. The specialized 24-hour training course includes lectures that involve recognizing emergency situations and over-the-phone guidelines, dealing with high-stress situations, as well as many other topics essential to becoming an effective dispatcher. Those who graduate the course will be able to volunteer at the Emergency Response Center.”
Coordinator for Training and Oversight of the National Dispatch Center for United Hatzalah, Isaac Katz, spoke highly of the new initiative. “We hope to continue to strengthen and build the cooperation and collaboration between our two organizations. Over the past four years, we have come to know how highly effective the Yad Sarah system is and to see it in person is highly informative for our dispatchers. Yad Sarah is incredibly active and successful in helping us reach those in need of emergency assistance, and the result is that we are able to save more lives.”
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)