A European Union official was overwhelmed during a recent visit to the Ziv Medical Center in Safed and couldn’t heap enough praise on Israeli medical staff there.
Ambassador-designate Lars Faaborg-Andersen, head of the Delegation of the European Union to Israel, commended Ziv staff for their medical treatment to Syrians injured in their country’s civil war.
“I was deeply impressed by the dedication of the medical staff that is sparing no effort to provide the injured patients, many of them children, with the best possible medical care,” Faaborg-Andersen said in a statement. “This commitment to the welfare of other human beings, regardless of the fact that they belong to an enemy nation, should be a source of pride to all Israelis.”
Shortly after Faaborg-Andersen’s visit, a 26-year-old mother gave birth to her seventh child by Caesarean section. The mother, brought to Ziv by the IDF, told doctors that her parents and brother were killed during a bombing on their village. She said their house was destroyed and that her family now lives in a tent and survivse on water and rice. This is the second birth of a Syrian baby at the Ziv Medical Center. Earlier this month, the first Syrian baby to be born in an Israeli hospital was delivered at the Safed center.
Ziv Medical Center has treated 177 Syrians to date. Another emotional triumph took place in September when an eight-year-old Syrian girl — whose leg was severely shattered in the conflict area near Daraa – walked out of Ziv after two months of complex operations. She was the youngest patient ever to receive the Ilizarov technique of external fixation.
“Use of this method has enabled us to save the child’s leg. The external fixation is so stable that with the completion of the treatments to reconstruct the shape of her leg, the child was able to get out of bed and walk around her room while fully treading on her leg,” said Dr. Alexander Lerner, head of the orthopedic department.
Dr. Oscar Embon, director of Ziv Medical Center, says that the medical team treats all the casualties with equal devotion, but added that the treatment of young children is especially moving. “Treatment of children always raises emotions, especially when it is clear that they are not involved in the hostilities and are victims of the situation. The fact that the young girl who was brought to Ziv in critical condition, on the brink of amputation, is able to stand on her leg today is very exciting for us all. Moments such as these are the greatest reward that the medical and para-medical staff could wish for,” he said.
Israeli hospitals – Ziv Medical Center, Western Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya, Rambam Medical Center in Haifa and Poriah Hospital near Tiberias – have treated hundreds of Syrians wounded in their country’s civil bloodshed.