Responding to an urgent request from the Governor of the Piedmont District in Italy, 20 doctors and medical experts from Sheba Medical Center travelled to help curb the spread of coronavirus in northern Italy.
The number of new coronavirus infections has risen steeply in the Piedmont District in northern Italy, and they are suffering from a shortage of both physicians and medical equipment. Israeli Foreign Ministry Director General Alon Ushpiz sent a letter to the Director General of the Israeli Health Ministry, Chezy Levy, stressing the need for help in containing the spread of COVID-19 in Italy. In response, Israel’s Ambassador to Rome, Dror Eydar, initiated a delegation of 20 physicians and healthcare providers from Sheba Medical Center to fly to Italy.
“Israel and Italy are allies that hold a deep connection and collaborate on many issues, so it’s only natural that Israel will seek to help Italy in a time of need,” said Ushpiz. “We’re positive that Italy will cherish Israeli assistance in a time like this.”
Israel’s embassy in Italy coordinated the humanitarian mission, connecting the Israeli and Italian health ministries in order to make all necessary arrangements. The ministries worked together to determine the specific requirements of the Piedmont District, including the provision of assistance to local Italian medical experts.
A decision was made that Sheba Medical Center, the largest hospital in Israel, would choose the most appropriate doctors for the delegation. Prof. Elhanan Bar On headed the group, which included about 20 doctors from a range of disciplines.
The Foreign Ministry and Israeli embassy in Rome are actively standing by to provide any additional assistance needed to accomplish this meaningful mission.
Since the pandemic broke out, more than 166,000 Piedmont residents were diagnosed with coronavirus, and more than 4,100 patients have died. The second wave of COVID-19 broke out in Italy in November, and the new daily infection rate peaked a few weeks ago, reaching about 40,000 patients. Since then, the numbers have dropped, but the nation is still in dire need of help.