Patients sleeping in hallways: overcrowding in Israeli hospitals

Hospitals are sometimes running on over 150% capacity.

February 14, 2019 09:16
Doctors at Assauta Ashdod hospital

Doctors at Assauta Ashdod hospital. (photo credit: Courtesy)


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The Israeli health system is in distress, with hospital patients sleeping in hallways and doctors helpless to rectify the situation, according to the Israel's Channel 12 News.

Throughout the day on Wednesday (Feb. 13), Rambam Medical Center in Haifa was at 160% capacity. Doctors pulled stretchers out of storage units in order to cope with the overcrowding, and patients were left waiting for up to a day to receive treatment.

"I've been waiting since yesterday to get treatment," said Rachel Gualik, a patient at the hospital, "but [the doctors] still haven't called me in."

Rambam Medical Center isn't the only hospital to face overcrowding issues this winter. At Assaf HaRofeh Medical Center near Rishon Letzion, and at HaEmek Medical Center near Afula, capacity was at 150%, while Kaplan Medical Center in Rehovot reached 140% capacity.

Another patient at Rambam Medical Center blamed the situation on the government, saying that "This government doesn't care about anyone."

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