Israel's success against the pandemic

Although it's only over when it's over, a look at corona statistics shows the startling difference between israel's containment of the pandemic and that of Europe.

Giulio Meotti

OpEds coronavirus unit at Shaare Zedek hospital in Jerusalem
coronavirus unit at Shaare Zedek hospital in Jerusalem
צילום: עצמי

Italy? 23.660 deaths.

Spain? 20.453.

France? 19.718.

UK? 16.060.

Belgium? 5.683.

Holland? 3.684.

This is as of Monday, April 20th The list of the Western countries most affected by the pandemic is dramatic.

Israel? 173 deaths (as of Wednesday, 187, ed).

A similar contrast is found if you count the number of deaths per million. Israel has 20, well behind France (302), UK (237), Italy (391), Spain (437), Belgium (490) and Holland (215).

It is too early to make a balanced analysis of what happened, it will be a very long battle to contain and defeat the “Wuhan Virus”. But it not premature to say that, among the Western countries, Israel has been the only one succeeding in containing the pandemic. The per capita mortality rate in Israel is among the lowest in the OECD. The mortality rate among the sick in Israel is among the lowest in the OECD.

The perception is that the virus is well on the way to being “beaten” in the Jewish State.

Israel’s health care system has not shown obvious signs of crisis. Israel was the first Western country to enforce targeted quarantines and travel restrictions. Israel conducted 17 tests per 1,000 people, like Germany (16) and much more than South Korea (10), France (5), and the UK (4).

Israel dealt with the crisis as a security issue also, involving its secret service and intelligence to track the infection, advise the government and find medical supplies abroad.

The Israeli public, on the whole, behaved very well, respecting the rules.

The Israeli scientific research world – Weizmann, Tel Aviv University, other facilities – is working hard to find a vaccine.

Taiwan, Singapore, South Korea and Japan are Asian countries which have been able to contain the damage. Europe and the US – with the only exception of Germany – almost totally failed. But for the West, mimicking the Asian countries is impossible, since the latter are a mix of collectivist culture and authoritarian policy, where individual rights and freedoms never flourished anyway.

Israel – our Western oasis in the East – is our only successful example. I would suggest the Europeans stop defaming the Jewish State and start looking at it as a model. 



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