dentist illustrative 58.
(photo credit: Bloomberg)
Hundreds of elderly Holocaust survivors are set to benefit from a generous
donation to the Jerusalem-based non-profit organization Yad Sarah for its
Geriatric Dental Clinic, which currently serves 150 to 200 survivors each
year,The Jerusalem Post was told Sunday.
A French foundation for
Holocaust survivors, Fondation Pour la Memoire de la Shoah, pinpointed the need
for subsidized or complimentary dental care for the survivors, who receive
minimal benefits from the Israeli government and often must choose between
medical care and food on a daily basis.
“Holocaust survivors do not
receive specific help with dental care,” commented Dr. Sarit Palmon, a
prosthodontics specialist and director of the clinic, adding that financial aid
handed out to survivors by the government is very low and is only enough for
“Most survivors must make a choice – either glasses or
dental care or hearing equipment.
They need to decide what they need
more,” she said.
According to Palmon, the Yad Sarah Geriatric Dental
Clinic assists up to 1,000 elderly people a year countrywide, with roughly 20
percent being Holocaust survivors. Now it is hoped that more will turn to the
clinic for help.
While the main clinic is based in the capital and is
operated by more than 40 volunteer dentists, the nonprofit organization also
runs a mobile dental unit in Jerusalem, Modi’in, Beersheba, Ashdod, Haifa, Kfar
Saba and Kiryat Motzkin for those too frail to make the journey.
Holocaust victims come to us with practically no teeth left because they did not
receive treatment for many years,” noted Palmon, highlighting that while those
recognized by the government as survivors receive financial benefits, a team of
social workers is tasked with assessing the background of other applicants who
suffered during World War II but who are not recognized by the
“The treatment we provide includes everything from basic dentistry
to hygienist care, root treatments and more,” she said, estimating that each
survivor will be eligible for up to €1,200 per person for treatments with the
new injection of funds.
“This is a serious amount of money and it is
really going to help. I hope that more people will come to us and benefit from
this,” added Palmon.
In addition to the dental clinic, the funding will
also enable hundreds of elderly survivors to be fitted with an emergency
connected to Yad Sarah’s mainframe emergency services. The button, which
already used by some 18,500 elderly people, allows those in distress
access to emergency response teams.
Last April, the government took steps
to increase the flow of aid, including medical benefits, to Holocaust
but many survivors here still struggle financially.
working with Holocaust survivors here estimate that one-third of the
270,000 survivors live below the poverty line and struggle to survive on