How an Israeli ambulance team saved a Gaza Palestinian child's life

Published: 26 June 2007
Briefing Number 197

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Here's an account of how Israel recently saved the life of a Gaza Palestinian child, and how Israeli medical teams have come under fire providing medical assistance to other Palestinian patients. This Briefing is based on a report which appeared on Ynet ( ) on 29 May 2007 .

Palestinian baby born with heart defect

On Sunday 27 May, an eight day old Palestinian baby born in Gaza with a severe heart defect was transferred to the Israeli hospital of Tel Hashomer in Tel Aviv, where he underwent life-saving heart surgery. He was moved from there into intensive care in a specialist childrens' unit at the hospital.

The baby had been brought to the Erez crossing terminal from Gaza into Israel , where an Israeli Magen David Adom (MDA) ambulance was waiting to transfer him to hospital, ventilated and in an incubator.

Israeli medics under fire

A senior MDA official Moshe Vaknin commented:

“We transfer patients from the Gaza Strip under fire on a daily basis. Last week our medics continued to treat a patient while shells were fired at the terminal at Erez. During the recent Jewish holidays we evacuated another baby in an incubator, endangering our ambulance staff…..”

Treatment of Palestinian babies at Tel Hashomer

Dr Dudi Mishali, who is a senior pediatric heart surgeon at Tel Hashomer hospital, stated:-

“An average of three Palestinian babies with heart defects arrive at our unit every week…. We have daily communication by phone and by fax with doctors in Gaza . There is no heart surgeon in the Strip so they transfer all of these children, and there are many, to be operated on here….. “

The Palestinian Authority reportedly covers half of the expenses, and the other half is generally covered by donations raised by Tel Hashomer hospital.

Mishali continues:-

“Our treatment has not changed over the last few days. This cooperation has survived difficult times of terrorism and bombings….”

The death of Israeli Oshri Oz

Israel saved the Palestinian baby's life on the same day that 36 year old Israeli Oshri Oz was killed by a Qassam rocket fired at the Israeli town of Sderot from Gaza . Oz was struck in the neck by shrapnel.

Oz was the father of two small children. At the time of Oz's death, his wife was 8 months pregnant.

The death of Oshri Oz. Saving a Palestinian child. Welcome to the ‘cycle of violence'…..

Related Beyond Images Briefings:

See Briefing 146 – The attempt to bomb Israel 's Soroka hospital: open letter from a Palestinian doctor

See also: Making The World A Better Place on the Beyond Images homepage