Residents of Jerusalem's Bayit Vegan neighborhood are already
accustomed to these sights, but once again seeing Magen
Lacholeh volunteers dispatching extensive medical equipment
from its office facility on Shabbos and loading it onto an
ambulance for a patient being transported to Eretz Yisroel
for urgent medical treatment sanctified the Name of Heaven
and made a powerful impression on all those who witnessed the
selfless workers in action.
The incident began with an urgent phone call on Friday
afternoon to Rabbi Binyomin Fisher, the chairman of the
organization. On the other end of the line was the leader of
the Jewish community in a certain Ukrainian city asking for
assistance for a three-week-old baby born prematurely with
heart and digestive tract defects who had undergone treatment
by local physicians but whose condition was deteriorating.
After collecting all of the medical documents, Rabbi Fisher
came to the family's aid by contacting the medical center
where the infant is currently hospitalized and looking into
facilities in Israel where it could receive proper care. A
quick inquiry revealed only the intensive care unit at
Hadassah Ein Kerem had room for the infant.
Meanwhile the air transport department at Magen Lacholeh
contacted Luksemburg Tours in Bnei Brak to make arrangements
with the airport authorities and El Al, obtaining permission
for the onboard medical equipment and the medical staff
All of the arrangements were set shortly before Shabbos, at
which time the Magen Lacholeh staff started preparing the
medical equipment needed for the transport operation,
scheduled to take place on Motzei Shabbos. The extensive
equipment — including a special mobile incubator, an
innovative LifePack, respirators and drugs — was
prepared and packaged for the flight and checked by the
cardiologist and ICU nurse slated to escort the patient.
Due to the infant's worsening condition and complications
with the flight schedule, the plane had to leave Israel
before Shabbos ended. When Rabbi Fisher received an update on
the situation he immediately ordered Magen Lacholeh to
activate its Shabbos mode, designed to minimize chilul
Shabbos in such situations. A non-Jew picked up the
people needed for the transport, brought them to the office,
prepared the paperwork and made photocopies, all under the
guidance of HaRav Yehoshua Neuwirth.
Upon the arrival of the patient and mother in Israel early
Sunday morning, a Magen Lacholeh ambulance was waiting on the
tarmac with senior medical staffers on hand. Following
initial checks the patient was transported directly to the
ICU at Hadassah Ein Kerem for a comprehensive treatment
program and Magen Lacholeh reports that through chasdei
Shomayim the baby's condition has stabilized.