Hospital directors to set up protest tent outside PM's Office

'We'll be here for Shabbat and even for Rosh Hashanah, until a solution is found.' Thousands of surgeries, procedures cancelled due to lack of funds.

Hezki Baruch ,

Hospitals' protest
Hospitals' protest
Arutz Sheva

Israel’s public hospitals are intensifying their protests against the government’s ongoing refusal to transfer promised budgets to the hospitals. On Thursday morning, they closed their surgery wards, and thousands of employees are now demonstrating opposite the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, with others blocking nearby streets.

Hospital directors are planning to set up a protest tent later in the day. Prof. Ofer Marin, director of Shaare Zedek Medical Center, told media, “It appears that our outcry has yet to reach the right ears. We’re now here, outside the Prime Minister’s Office, because he should be intervening in this crisis.”

“We’re going to open a protest tent here, all seven hospital directors, and we’ll be staying here until a solution is found. We’ll hold our Shabbat (Sabbath) meals here and even our Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) meals too, together with our families, until a solution is found. Our doctors and nurses are crying out together with us – they stand with us, here at our protest, which is why they cannot treat patients in the hospitals.”

“Thousands of surgeries and other procedures have been cancelled since our budgets ran out,” added Prof. Yoram Weiss, director of Hadassah Hospital. “And yet, the Health and Finance Ministries somehow still can’t seem to find a way to fulfill the promises they made. It’s painful for me to see what’s happening here. We hope very much that a solution will be found before Rosh Hashanah. This isn’t about us – it’s about the residents of Jerusalem, Nazareth, Netanya, and Bnei Brak. We’re fighting this battle for them.”

Six months ago, the government signed an agreement with the country’s public hospitals promising to transfer 300 million shekels for basic needs. The government has since reneged on the agreement.