On April 2, Israel Bonds leadership was part of an exclusive event with American Friends of Rambam Hospital, in association with the Consulate General of Israel to New England, for an insightful view at the way Israel’s courageous medical teams are working to treat and combat coronavirus and keep the people of Israel safe. The global event was moderated by the Israel Bonds Medical Division’s co-chair, Andrew Hutter, MD, in which a worldwide audience of over 300 were in attendance.
Dr. Michael Halberthal, CEO of the Rambam Medical Center located in Haifa, was joined by Gila Hyams, RN/MA, director of Nursing at Rambam Healthcare Campus, along with Dr. Talma Cohen, director of the Mental Health Center for Trauma Survivors at Rambam, all of which are actively playing a role in the fight against COVID-19.
Dr. Haberthal, in describing the measures the hospital is taking to mitigate the spread of the virus, detailed how the process of isolation has assisted in slowing the rate of confirmed cases, and attributes an array of specific groups helping to lead the effort, such as Israeli start-ups monitoring patients’ vitals and elite units of the IDF instructing on logistical and operational approaches to managing the flow of patients.
Gila Hyams, RN/MA at Rambam, conveyed how her charge of training nurses to work efficiently amidst the threat of the coronavirus is of utmost priority, and how the quality of care must remain unchanged for each and every patient. Still, she holds to a positive outlook, stating, “We can handle the challenge, we will be resilient.”
Dr. Talma Cohen, speaking from the mental health perspective, acknowledged COVID-19 to be a “mega-trauma” for many, with immediate and long-term effects that disrupt our entire way of living as a society. Although uncertainty remains, Dr. Cohen advises to help one another to adjust and make the most of the situation, stay connected to loved ones on virtual visits, and be mindful of optimizing physical health as well as mental, while washing hands, wearing masks, and practicing social distancing. She emphasizes, “We need to maintain strength, we are bound to one another, and we can ride this.”
Bonds President & CEO Israel Maimon, in welcoming the guests on the webinar, gave high praise to Rambam Hospital, recalling, during his term as Israel’s government secretary, Rambam’s steadfast efforts in “being on the frontline” during the 2006 Second Lebanon War. He also called the medical practitioners and staff “great true role models” where all people, regardless of religious belief or background receive “the highest level of professionalism and devoted care.”
In highlighting this “true coexistence,” Maimon thanked the team for being heroes, and evoked confidence that they would “rise to the challenge of the pandemic.”
The third of this series, these global discussions will serve as an important means of disseminating details about Israel and expanding awareness of the Israel Bonds mission.