Israel’s Baruch Padeh Medical Centre has sent a delegation of top doctors to Botswana to assist the country in its fight against COVID-19, the hospital said.
The delegation left on Monday and included the hospital’s deputy director, Dr. Hagar Mizrahi, and director of its recently closed coronavirus intensive care unit, Dr. Moshe Matan.
“We are here to share with the medical staff the vast knowledge and experience that we have accumulated during the complex treatment of the coronavirus pandemic,” Mizrahi said.
The team is working with Sir Ketumile Masire Teaching Hospital, which serves Botswana’s COVID-19 patients. Currently, there are 50 patients in serious condition being treated at the facility. At its peak, there were 130 serious patients.
Botswana has reported more than 47,000 cases of the virus and 724 deaths among its 2.3 million citizens, according to the coronavirus tracking provided by Our World in Data. The country, located in southern Africa, started vaccinating recently. They have administered around 49,000 doses and are now waiting on another supply.
Israeli Ambassador Gershon Keidar attended a meeting of the delegation with Health Minister Dr. Edwin Dikoloti where he explained that Jewish tradition holds that “he who saves a life saves the world entirely” and therefore the Israeli team readily responded to calls for help from the Botswana government.
Earlier this week, Israel’s Foreign Ministry and the Israeli company Amdocs sent medical assistance to India, including thousands of oxygen generators, ventilators and other much-needed equipment. More than 3,500 people are dying a day in the country, which is plagued by a highly infectious Indian variant.
Likewise, Sheba Medical Center sent $200,000 worth of medical supplies to Uruguay, as well as a delegation of experts to share knowledge on how best to fight the pandemic. Uruguay has been diagnosing between 2,000 and 4,000 new cases of COVID-19 per day for the past month and has the second highest per-capita rate of daily infections in the world.
The new strain of the Brazilian variant, which is known to reinfect younger people and those who have recovered from coronavirus infection, is circulating in the country. This week the Health Ministry announced that two cases of the Brazilian variant were discovered in Israel.
In December 2020, Sheba also sent a delegation of nearly two dozen medical personnel to Italy to assist during the country’s second wave. [jpost.com]