(VIDEO AND PHOTOS IN EXTENDED ARTICLE)
Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem Rabbi Aryeh Stern Shlita visited Sacher Park in the makeshift hospital established by the children’s parents from Hadassah.
The rabbi of Jerusalem told the parents, “You cannot pass by Sacher Park and remain indifferent. I am not familiar with the details, but there are sick children and parents in distress. We have a mutual guarantee in the Jewish people. It must not remain that way. We need a solution for the children”.
During his tour, the rabbi was exposed to the children’s story and called on the parties to find a solution. I cannot judge, citing the klall שמוע בין אחיכם ושפטתם צדק .”
Rabbi Stern explained that since he doesn’t hear both parties involved, he cannot rule in the matter. “I came to bless the children with a refuah shleima and strengthen the parents and daven a solution will be found very soon”.
A number of senior oncologists have recently resigned from Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital due to the dispute surrounding management of the pediatric bone-marrow transplant units. Hospital Director Prof. Ze’ev Rothstein insists the patients, including children, are receiving the best possible care despite the fact that he has combined the pediatric unit with the adult unit. The senior oncologists disagree and insist the hospital’s financial considerations are being put ahead of the care of the children. The doctors, all experts in the treatment of children with blood cancers, accuse Rothstein of planning to profit by treating children from the PA (Palestinian Authority) and Russia, as well as elsewhere and this would be accomplished at the expense of the Israeli pediatric patients diagnosed with leukemia, lymphoma and other illnesses to profit Hadassah NIS 500,000.
Parents of some of the pediatric patients set up a large tent in Sacher Park called the “field hospital” in the hope of drawing attention to their difficult plight. They have harsh words for Hadassah and Health Minister Litzman, who is supporting the latter over the position of the senior physicians who resigned.
The tent in essence is not a treatment facility despite its name, but an audible protest tent for concerned parents, who believe the care of their seriously ill children have been pushed aside for monetary interests.
Litzman was a strong force favoring the appointment of Rothstein to the financially-ailing Hadassah about 18 months ago and has been a staunch supporter of him since.
As a result of the resignations, there is now a shortage of physicians at Hadassah expert in hemato-oncology. Most are simply pediatricians and the doctors who quit explain these doctors and the nurses and others in the adult unit lack the specialized training to properly treat these very sick children. They insist these children require specialized hands, which are now lacking due to Rothstein’s insistence of placing the children in the adult unit.
In the accompanying video, we see the tent during a visit by Mrs. Sara Netanyahu.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)