Yosef Krichli, a 54-year-old man of Georgian origin who suffered from leukemia,
died on Thursday, after an Ezer Mizion bone marrow testing campaign was held
around the country to save him and others of ethnic origins that are poorly
represented in its national bone marrow registry.
Krichli died at Wolfson
Medical Center in Holon following an eight-month struggle with leukemia but
before a compatible match could be found.
Only about a 10th of people
registered with Ezer Mizion’s data bank are of oriental or Ethiopian Jewish
Dr. Bracha Zisser, bone marrow registry director at Ezer Mizion,
said that the facility is a “matter of life and death. The premature and tragic
death of Yosef Krichli shows how critical it is to undergo screening.”
takes about a month to process data and find a match for would-be recipients of
bone marrow, which could save their lives from blood cancer. Ezer Mizion’s
voluntary special campaign sought Jews of Iraqi, Georgian, Bukharan, Yemenite,
Caucasus, Kurd and Ethiopian origin.
Earlier this week, Prime Minister
Binyamin Netanyahu – who is formally health minister – gave a saliva sample for
determining tissue type and encouraged other Israelis to undergo screening and
make donations to pay for processing. By 5 p.m., some 5,000 people underwent
Unlike previous years, the state is donating money to help
finance the bone marrow screening campaign, said MK Ze’ev Bielski, who has
tabled a bill that would require the government to subsidize such
The MK said he would like the tissue types of some 20,000 more
Israelis to be added to the registry.
To donate money for processing, SMS
the number 10 to 2255 or call 1-800-236-236.