Lucas Neff, Sarah Drew, Kevin McKidd 311 .
(photo credit: Avi Hayun)
For the second time in a month, actors who play doctors on an American
television series were able to simulate medical procedures at Israeli
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On Friday, Kevin McKidd and Sarah Drew, who portray Dr. Owen
Hunt and Dr. April Kepner, respectively, on the ABC show Grey’s Anatomy,
visited the robotic surgery laboratory at Hadassah University Medical Center at
Ein Kerem. The famous guests were allowed to use the robotic tools to complete
procedures, just like their characters.
In May, members of the cast of
the FOX series House – Lisa Edelstein, Omar Epps, Jesse Spencer, Amber Tamblyn –
and David Shore, the show’s creator, executive producer and lead writer, used
robotic surgical tools during a visit to the Sheba Medical Center’s medical
simulation ward at Tel Hashomer.
On Friday, McKidd and Drew participated
along with Gregory Smith and Travis Milne, who co-star in the ABC police drama
series Rookie Blue, and Lucas Neff and Shannon Woodward from the FOX sitcom
The delegation’s week-long trip was organized by America’s
Voices in Israel and co-sponsored by the Conference of Presidents of Major
American Jewish Organizations and by El Al Israel Airlines. America’s Voices in
Israel also organized the House cast’s tour of Israel last month.
delegation members also toured the Hadassah University Medical Center- Hebrew
University Biotechnology Park and Charlotte R. Bloomberg Mother and Child
“It’s humbling to see the work that real surgeons do,” McKidd
told The Jerusalem Post
McKidd’s mother, Kathleen, accompanied him to
“My mom’s always wanted to come to Israel and visit Jerusalem,”
he said. “This is a lifelong dream of hers.”
McKidd briefly traveled to
Israel 15 years ago when, during a family vacation in Cyprus, the Scottish actor
took a ship to Israel for a one-day excursion.
He acquired many Israeli
friends during the filming of the movie Bunraku, written and directed by Guy
Moshe and produced by Ram Bergman, in Romania in 2008.
“I have a group of
Israeli friends in Los Angeles – they’re great people and the people here are
the same,” McKidd said.
“I encourage travel across the board, not just to
Israel, but this is a very interesting country to visit and I would encourage
people to come and see the country and the surrounding places.”
Grey’s Anatomy, Rookie Blue and Raising Hope actors began their tour in Tel
Aviv. While dining with former MK Effie Eitam at the 2C eatery atop the Azrieli
Towers, another patron, IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz, walked over to
greet Eitam and his guests.
The tour’s itinerary included stops in Jaffa,
Sderot (where the actors spoke to film and TV arts students at Sapir Academic
College), Nazareth and Safed, as well as climbing Masada, floating in the Dead
Sea and swimming in Lake Kinneret. Most of the delegation members left Israel on
Sunday evening; Smith and Milne planned to extend their stay so they could
travel to Eilat and to Petra in Jordan.
During a press conference with
Smith and Neff at Jerusalem’s Inbal Hotel on Sunday, Drew said the most moving
places she visited during the trip were the Western Wall and the Garden of
“There’s so much history here, so I would encourage people to
make the trip out,” said Drew, the daughter of a Presbyterian minister and the
wife of a professor specializing in Second Temple-era Judaism. “I felt
completely safe the entire time I’ve been here – I think it’s a good thing to
let people know not to be afraid to come,” she said.