Mother Pleas with Hospital Over Attempt to Evict Injured Toddler
Adelle Biton, the three-year-old infant who was critically injured nearly one year ago when Arab youths threw a rock at her family's car and hit her directly in the head, was asked to be removed from Lowenstien Hospital in Ra'anana on Tuesday - and her mother Adva is disgusted with the unceremonious eviction.
The attack on Adelle occurred near the Samaria city of Ariel last March, when Arab terrorists hurled stones at the family car. After being in critical condition, the young girl miraculously managed to pull through her potentially fatal wounds, but has only been released from the hospital briefly and temporarily over the long months of recuperation due to the severity of her injuries.
The Biton family has spent most of the last 11 months by Adelle's hospital bedside, holding a party at the hospital for her third birthday while she was still unconscious last April. Adelle has not fully recovered.
Now, the hospital allegedly wrote Adva in a letter on Tuesday claiming that Adelle has completed the rehabilitative process and received the maximum care for her condition, and therefore the management does not see fit to allow her to stay in the hospital. Following these statements, the Biton family was asked to leave the hospital on Wednesday at noon.
Biton - who has reportedly not left the hospital yet - called the letter "despicable lies" which do not reflect the reality of Adelle's condition. The toddler is still only barely conscious.
"I have a girl but she doesn't communicate, as far as I'm concerned it's as if she's living while dead," Adva told Channel 2 earlier this year.
Biton noted that Lowenstein Hospital staff already asked the family to leave six weeks ago, despite numerous meetings with the hospital's director clarifying that the family home has not been adapted yet to accommodate Adelle while she is still handicapped.
The Biton family has been in a long battle with Bituach Leumi (National Insurance) for over half a year to get government funding for their home to be made handicapped-accessible - a claim which Biton notes is legitimate since her child was the victim of a terror attack - and only gained approval in the past several days. As such, Adva stated, the family cannot return home just yet. The process may take as long as four or five months.
"This is inhumane," she continued. "The administration of the hospital, and the entire country, have lost all sense of human dignity."
"[Former Prime Minister] Ariel Sharon was lying here for eight years for no reason and we all paid for it, and my daughter has made good progress," she stated. "Why can't they just give her time?"
Biton added that she and her husband have been staying at the hospital in shifts, living long and rough days as they tried to speak to hospital staff over Adelle's condition.
"I avoided going to the media over this," she said. "A month and a half ago we spoke to Health Minister [Yael German] and talked mother to mother. She said she would take care of the issue and send representatives but nothing happened."
Practically speaking, the Biton family was meant to go home today, but Adva has insisted on staying unless evicted by court order. The Biton family has enlisted the services of Professor Aviad Hacohen over the issue, but hospital representatives have already stated that they do intend to begin legal proceedings over the issue and remove Adelle from the Hospital.
Adva had emotional words for hospital staff, begging them not to evict her daughter right before the Passover holiday.
"We want a little compassion, and Lowenstein Hospital should give it," Adva said. She added that the hospital has plenty of empty rooms available and, as such, there is no urgent need for her daughter to leave.
Lowenstein Hospital responded to the plea - and the media outrage over the Biton family's ordeal - later Wednesday.
"The hospital gave Adelle Biton the optimal treatment for her condition," it stated. "A month ago, Adelle was scheduled to be released, after the family received advance notice to prepare for her arrival well in advance. The hospital gave another one-month extension to the family to allow them to prepare for her return home - but, unfortunately, we cannot extend the period further. It is important to note that medical treatment for Adelle has ended and there is no justification for her to remain in the hospital."