Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Health system not ready for next war

From Ynet News, 21/8/07, by Amnon Meranda ...

"Israel's health system is not ready for the next war," Chairman of the Knesset's State Control Committee MK Zevulun Orlev said Monday at a special meeting following the state comptroller's recent report on the handling of Israel's home front during the Second Lebanon War.

The committee members addressed the problem of fortification of hospitals and Rafi Beyar, director of Rambam Medical Center in Haifa, claimed that the government was "shirking its national responsibility to ensure the safety of the residents of the north by not transferring funds for fortifying the hospital."

Beyar later told Ynet that "the government has not transferred even one agora for the fortification. We are being thrown to the donors". State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss' report which was released in July stated that except for the Ziv Medical Center in Safed and the Western Galilee Hospital in Nahariya, no other medical institution in northern Israel was fortified, despite the matter being addressed in previous reports.

The comptroller stated that fortifying hospitals should become top priority, along with the medical teams who were forced to drive to and from the hospitals during the war. The report also stated that the process of evacuating injured to hospitals should be supervised so as not to create overcrowding in the emergency and operating rooms.

As for Magen David Adom's performance, Lindenstrauss revealed that some 200 ambulances stationed in the north lacked protective equipment against chemical warfare and pointed out that the emergency services did not have sufficient funds for emergencies.

No comments: