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April 04, 2003 - Image 126

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-04-04

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In Case Of Attack

Israel's Hospital of Peace prepares for the worst;
treats all with compassion.

aEmek Medical Center, "Israel's Hospital of Peace," in the Central Galilee
community of Afula, has been preparing for war since September 2002.
Larry Rich, the hospital's development director, calls it "weekly
exercises to be ready for the unthinkable."
In the event of a chemical or biological attack, huge steel doors will close and a
special filtering system will seal the hospital's emergency ward and pediatric unit
and allow the staff and patients to breathe without gas masks for up to 800 hours.
Persons contaminated by a chemical or biological attack in the area first will be
treated in the hospital parking lot where portable showers will be set up.
Rich calls the medical center, located in the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan
Detroit's Partnership 2000 region, "an
island of sanity in a world gone nuts."
"Here one finds Jews treating Arabs
and Arabs treating Jews," he said. "We lie
next to one another and families share
small talk about their loved ones. Mothers
and babies from Jenin are admitted here
and treated with the finest in medical care
— often without payment.
"You don't hear about that stuff
because innocent casualties are more
newsworthy than acts of humanitarian-
ism," he said. "Coexistence through
medicine is our way of life."


— Harry Kirsbaum, staff writer

4/ 4


Clockwise from top left:

Israeli Asher Bohbot sits in the pediatric unit with
his sick daughter; Nitsan, 5, in front of windows
sealed against biological or chemical attack.

A baby cries in front of nursery windows sealed
against attack.

Yossi Harari, head of ventilation and air condition-
ing, shows the special filtering system that will be
used in the event of attack.

Larry Rich, director of development, shows the
heavy steel doors that will be closed around the
emergency ward following attack.

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