Shaare Zedek Launches Effort to Vaccinate Entire Hospital Staff

(JERUSALEM- December 20, 2020) Early Sunday morning, Shaare Zedek Medical Center began vaccinating the hospital’s staff against COVID-19 with the Director General Professor Ofer Merin and President Jonathan Halevy becoming the first staff members to receive the first dosage of the vaccine. The effort began late Saturday evening when Shaare Zedek’s Pharmacy Director Estelle Bukatman accepted the shipment of vaccinations which will provide dosages to the first 1,000 staff members over the course of the coming days.
Professor Merin described the moment as historic for the hospital, Israel and the medical community at large and urged everyone who can to go and vaccinate. “This is an opportunity to salute our staff that continue to dedicate themselves to the treatment of this pandemic and I very much hope that these teams who have worked so hard over the past few months will be able to quickly return to their previous routines as soon as possible.”
The hospital has set up a comprehensive system for ensuring the rapid vaccination of the staff with multiple stations able to accommodate as many as five people at a time. After vaccinating, a dedicated area is set aside for several minutes of rest before being released. Most significantly, the vaccination area is housed in the very same place that the first Corona patients were treated in the early days of the crisis.
The launch took place in the presence of national and international media with the heads of the Wilf Children’s Hospital, the Corona Unit and the Nursing Service also being among the first to vaccinate.
Professor Halevy credited the Israeli government for spearheading the process to receive the vaccinations which will be available to the entire adult population. He said that public support in going out to vaccinate will be critical in bringing the country, and the world, beyond the crisis. He cautioned that this process will take considerable time and urged people to continue to abide by the restrictions. “My hope and prayer is that by Seder night we will be able to celebrate completely differently from the way that we did last year,” he said.
Dr. Ramzi Kourd, Director of the Corona Unit said, “This is a very emotional moment for me personally as I have seen so many patients through our Unit and sadly so many who died from this virus. I very much hope that this is the light at the end of the tunnel and that we are in a new period of treating the disease. I firmly believe that this is an effective and safe vaccine and that within four to six months we can hope to see its full effects.”

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