Rabbi Yuval Cherlow
Rabbi Yuval CherlowArutz Sheva

Rabbi Yuval Cherlow, a leading Religious Zionist rabbi and the dean of the Orot Shaul Yeshiva in Tel Aviv, on Wednesday ruled that medical staff may prioritize vaccinated coronavirus patients over those who refused the vaccine.

Discussing a situation in which two coronavirus patients are waiting for medical treatment - one who is vaccinated and one who could have received the vaccine from a medical standpoint but refused - Rabbi Cherlow said it is preferable to prioritize the vaccinated patient.

However, he clarified that his statement does not apply to urgent situations in which every moment matters, emphasizing that in such situations, only the usual medical considerations should be taken into account, and it should go in accordance with the urgency of each person's situation.

At the same time, when the situation is not urgent, it is best to treat the vaccinated patients first.

In a statement, Rabbi Cherlow, who heads the Tzohar rabbinical organization, said: "When we are discussing urgently saving lives, the considerations are put aside in favor of action. However, when we are not discussing absolutely urgent situations, there is room to prioritize a patient who was vaccinated over a patient who refused the vaccine."

"This stems from natural justice, and from the simple principle that a person is responsible for his actions, and that his personal choice must never harm others."