Ramping up testing at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem as Israel begins Lockdown

Sunday, Mar 22 2020

Dear Friends,

As one of the few hospitals in Israel tasked by the Ministry of Health with caring for patients with coronavirus, Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem is a leader on the front lines to fight this highly contagious and dangerous disease. This week, we took on a new, critical role at the Israeli government's request, ramping up testing for the virus, a crucial step in preventing the spread of this global pandemic.

“The State of Israel is at war with coronavirus. There’s a national state of emergency in which there’s a huge threat to life, the economy, and our society," Hadassah Medical Organization Director General Zeev Rotstein stated flatly in a letter outlining steps Hadassah is taking to treat more patients.


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Working with colleagues at other designated coronavirus hospitals, Prof. Rotstein is driving the initiative to immediately ramp up the number of tests administered in Israel.

  • Ramping up to fill the void for the State of Israel after the shut-down of the Central Laboratory of the State of Israel, by activating Hadassah's Clinical Virology Laboratory, headed by Dr. Dana Wolf
  • Recruiting more than 1,300 medical students, from five universities, to be trained by Magen David Adom to assist in COVID-19 screening and testing.
  • Working with the Ministry of Health to fast-track approval for laboratories in hospitals, universities, and research institutions to perform PCR tests, which reveal the presence of the virus’s RNA, as well as to equip themselves with robotic sequencers, which make mass testing possible.
  • Recruiting more than 600 doctoral students from the natural sciences to help with testing in shifts around the clock.
  • Expediting transport of test samples to laboratories with the help of private companies.
  • Purchasing, by the Ministry of Health, tens of thousands of additional test kits, although a substantial shortfall of test kits remains.
  • Keeping patients safe by assuring that no one enters Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem without a temperature check.
  • Treating, to date, about two dozen patients in the isolated Outbreak Ward at Hadassah Ein Kerem's Round Building, including a 35-year-old woman, who gave birth with the help of midwives and medical staff in protective gear in a special room. "You made me happy and so moved by what you are doing for me. I am worried for my baby from afar and helpless, and am so grateful for your concern and devotion. Thank you, thank you, thank you!"

We hope you’ll join our efforts to bolster Hadassah’s response to this worldwide pandemic.

With Pride, Passion and Purpose,

Rhoda Smolow Signature
Rhoda Smolow
Hadassah National President

Janice Weinman Signature
Janice Weinman
CEO/Executive Director

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