Hadassah

Cypriot Health Minister Helps Save Israeli Patient

Wednesday, Mar 22 2017

Dr. George Pamboridis

Whether it was a newborn baby with a severe heart defect or a pregnant woman with an unusual ectopic pregnancy, the Hadassah Medical Organization has been known to save the lives of Cypriot patients by helicoptering them to its hospital for complex emergency treatments. Recently, however, it was the Cypriot Health Minister who helped save the life of an Israeli patient.

It was about 6:00 p.m. on Friday evening, already the Sabbath, and the 80-year-old man was in dire need of a medication that Israel did not have in the necessary intravenous form. Prof. Avi Rivkind, Senior Surgeon and international expert in trauma medicine, contacted Herzel Edri, Director of the Foreign Ministry’s Situation Room, who immediately appealed to a number of Israeli embassies across Europe in an attempt to locate the drug. 

When Yael Ravia-Zadok, Israel’s Ambassador in Cyprus, received the request, she immediately contacted the Cypriot Minister of Health, Dr. George Pamboridis, who checked around and got back to Ambassador Ravia-Zadok in under an hour. “We have the medication,” he reported. “The Nicosia General Hospital is waiting for you to come and pick it up.” Prof. Rivkind explained that Hadassah received other offers of help as well, but he decided that it would be easier to get the medicine from Cyprus.

When the ambassador asked how to transfer payment, Dr. Pamboridis replied: "Payment? What payment?" and refused to accept any compensation for the life-saving medication.

The administration officer at the Israeli embassy in Cyprus immediately went to the hospital, picked up the medicine, and had it flown to Israel. From the airport, the medication was transferred to Hadassah with the help of a member of the patient's family. As Prof. Rivkind relates, “Doctors asked me how we were going to get the medication without all the proper documentation papers, but for saving a life, a pilot will put it in his pocket and bring it.”

The drug reached its destination in time. As Prof. Rivkind reports, “the man is home; he is functioning; he’s wonderful!”

The Cypriots’ actions, commented Ambassador Ravia-Zadok, "embody the depth of friendship between Israel and Cyprus, between the Cypriots and the Israelis." The Ambassador went on to say: "We will always remember the Cypriots' commitment to human lives experienced firsthand by Jewish Holocaust survivors who were on their way to Israel and deported by the British to Cyprus. The 53,000 survivors were concentrated in detention camps on the island from 1946-1949. Even then, we saw humane gestures of many Cypriots, who assisted people in the camps."

Israel’s Foreign Ministry and the Israel Export Institute decided to grant a certificate of appreciation to the Cypriot Health Minister, when he arrives shortly in Israel. The certificate reads: "Whoever saves a life, it is considered as if he saved an entire world."

Comments

No comments yet.
First Name
Email
Comment
Enter this word:

Related Stories

alt_text

Wednesday, Aug 16 2017

Hadassah Removes Tumor;
Gazan Boy Walks for First Time

Unable to stand on his feet, suffering from severe respiratory distress, a four-year-old boy from Gaza gained the ability to walk once Hadassah Hospital surgeons identified and removed a large tumor lodged in his chest.

READ MORE ›
alt_text

Wednesday, Aug 16 2017

Hadassah Hosts Health Innovation Conference

Over one hundred doctors, researchers, and entrepreneurs gathered at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem this summer to discuss how to advance the quality of patient care with computational power.

READ MORE ›
alt_text

Monday, Aug 14 2017

Hadassah Hosts First Human Trial with Drug to Fight Nasty Bacterial Infection

Immuron, an Australian biopharmaceutical company, has received approval from the Hadassah Medical Organization’s ethics committee and Israel’s Ministry of Health to begin its first clinical trial with a new drug to fight a bacterial infection called Clostridium Difficile (CDI).

READ MORE ›
alt_text

Thursday, Aug 3 2017

Mystery of Devastating Pediatric Disease Solved by Hadassah Team

A genetic mutation causing a rare and devastating pediatric neurological disease that has puzzled medical centers around the world has been identified at the Hadassah Medical Organization by Prof. Orly Elpeleg, head of Hadassah's Department of Genetics and Metabolic Diseases.

READ MORE ›

Donation Questions

donorservices@hadassah.org

(800) 928-0685

Membership Questions

membership@hadassah.org

(800) 664-5646

Missions Department

missions@hadassah.org

(800) 237-1517

Contact Us

40 Wall Street

New York, NY 10005

support@hadassah.org

More ›

Show More