The Hill’s Guardian Medical Center: A Neonatal Wing with a Difference

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Originally, before its name was changed to Sheba Medical Center, named after Dr. Chaim Sheba, its first Director, it was called Tel Ha’Shomer, in Ramat-Gan, Israel. The name, in the Hebrew language, translates to Hill’s Guardian. And indeed, it is the guardian of life in Israel.

The hospital was established in 1948 as Israel’s first military hospital, designated to treat casualties of Israel’s War of Independence. The hospital is still the leading caring medical center, in Israel, for war casualties and their rehabilitation. Founded in a cluster of abandoned British military barracks left from the British Mandate era in the land, it was originally known as Army Hospital No. 5. David Ben-Gurion, then the Prime Minister of Israel, had it renamed Tel Ha’Shomer Hospital. In 1953, the hospital became a civilian hospital, and Dr. Chaim Sheba became its first director. Following Dr. Sheba’s death, the hospital was renamed in his honor, ‘The Chaim Sheba Medical Center, Tel Ha’Shomer.’

Sheba grew into a stellar, large medical village and it takes a village to save many lives. Relying on Israeli Chutzpa, innovation, Start-Up atmosphere, that is moving Israel forward at a speedy rate, and strategizing the future of the next century, Sheba became the largest medical center in the Middle East and among the best in the world.

Last year, the Center treated 1.5 million people and the hospital’s Neonatology and Neonatal Intensive Care department is one of the largest in Israel. Here, approximately 170,000 babies are born annually, of which 10% are premature or require intensive care treatment. The center also extends its hands to help other hospitals in Israel.

In addition, Sheba Medical Center is a leader in sending medical teams to disaster areas, recently to the disaster areas of Mexico and Puerto Rico. Israel has been on the front line of fast-dispatch of expert medical teams where they are needed.

Recently the Center’s management was handed over to Prof. Yitshak Kreiss, M.D., the Center’s current Director General. Sheba is now in excellent hands of a man who was the surgeon general/brigadier general of Israel Armed Forces and a world renowned expert in both military medicine and disaster management.

Professor Yitshak Kreiss, Director General, Sheba Medical Center.
Professor Yitshak Kreiss, Director General, Sheba Medical Center

Many hospitals, the world over, have a Neonatal ICU division but in Israel they have to take into factor that war can begin at any moment and you cannot move and shake fragile babies in incubators, fighting for their lives, to a close-by shelter. The ICU unit must be insulated for protection.

Though the hospital is government and Insurance Company subsidized, it is never enough when the project is above calculated standard fiscal needs.

And here enter the Friends of Sheba Medical Center who believe in saving lives and that the future of the state of Israel – and the world – belongs to every baby born. I must add, that for me it is nice to sit among people who care.

Each year Friends of Sheba hold an annual gala to raise awareness and funds designated to improve this medically majestic institute. This year, the sold out gala, attended by 725 supporters, held at the Beverly Hills Hotel, Beverly Hills, California, chaired by Beverly and Robert Cohen, was dedicated to raise funds for the Neonatal – of or related to newborn children – ICU Division, headed by Dr. Tzipi Strauss, Chief of Neonatology, at Sheba Medical Center.

Parham Zar, President, Friends of Sheba and Beverly Cohen, Gala Chair.
Parham Zar, President, Friends of Sheba and Beverly Cohen, Gala Chair
Actor John Lithgow, Emcee.
Actor John Lithgow, Emcee

Illness does not discriminate. Just as the Center’s motto is to protect and heal, the neonatal ICU’s motto is wholeness, and nurturing. Sheba is proud to be the delivery room for 30-40 babies born there each day.

“Sheba 25” accounts for the transformation of the Center from a sick house to a health house.

Oncology and stroke are the diseases of the future and must be seen as such. The Center believes that part of the cure process is HOPE and hope makes Dr. Strauss and her team fight hard for each baby born who needs extra care in his or her fight for life.

L-Dvir & Orly Salomon, Dr. Tzipi Strauss, Salomon Children-Yuval [L] and Guy Salomon. Yuval's life was saved at Sheba Neonatal unit
L-Dvir & Orly Salomon, Dr. Tzipi Strauss, Salomon Children-Yuval [L] and Guy Salomon. Yuval’s life was saved at Sheba Neonatal unit
The way the world is developing, people will be living for a century – 100 years. I always say that the dream of the children of today is the future of the world. The way we treat a newly born baby is the mirror image of 100 years from now.

They raised $2.5 million dollars at the gala, with more unaccounted for yet, this October 2017. This sum will give an extra shield of protection – medically and safety – to every newly born infant in the exceptional Sheba Medical Center, Israel.

Join the team; people who care volunteer as a way of life.

Sheba Medical Center embraces the future
Sheba Medical Center embraces the future

During the 2006 second Lebanon War, Nurit Greenger, referenced then as the “Accidental Reporter” felt compelled to become an activist. Being an ‘out-of-the-box thinker, Nurit is a passionately committed advocate for Jews, Israel, the United States, and the Free World in general. From Southern California, Nurit serves as a “one-woman Hasbarah army” for Israel who believes that if you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.

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