Could Israel's hospitals, struggling with COVID-19, handle a new war?

Sources in Israeli security said that hospitals are expected to reach capacity very soon, which would cause a collapse of the medical system in the event of war.

Ichilov Medical team at the coronavirus unit, in the Ichilov hospital, Tel Aviv, Israel, July 28, 2020. (photo credit: YOSSI ALONI/FLASH90)
Ichilov Medical team at the coronavirus unit, in the Ichilov hospital, Tel Aviv, Israel, July 28, 2020.
(photo credit: YOSSI ALONI/FLASH90)
Hospitals will soon reach capacity in terms of their ability to take in more patients and handle the workload caused by the pandemic, according to a report on Tuesday from IDF Military Intelligence and the Health Ministry information center, evaluating the rate of coronavirus infection in Israel.
The report claimed that it is important to note that this evaluation does not address the capacity of coronavirus units, but the ability of hospitals to treat other sick and injured patients. The ministry accepted the report, which was written by IDF Military Intelligence Directorate officers.
Sources involved in Israeli security said Israelis should be very concerned that a few hundred patients can bring hospitals to their capacity, especially in relation to any future war that could break out in the North.
A source said that “these statistics point to a national problem with the country's ability to handle any emergency, from natural disasters to pandemics, but also are a warning sign that in the case of a war in the North, a war expected to cause more destruction and casualties than any of Israel’s previous wars, Israel will not be able to treat patients if a few hundred patients bring hospitals to the limits of their capacity."
The report also found that at the current rate of infection, even if the rate decreases soon, it will take more than three months to reach the government target of 400 infected per day.
The number of new patients per day on a weekly average continues to be the highest in the world per capita, and Israel recently surpassed the US in the number of coronavirus deaths per day per capita. The report also states that in the past month there has been a 70% increase in the number of serious patients, with 237 more in just the past two weeks. In terms of new patients per million people, the percentage of positive tests and the number of those dead in relation to population size, Israel is toward the top of the list globally, even after adjusting for the high number of tests that Israel carries out.
The Health Ministry published on Tuesday that the number of serious patients in hospitals topped 800, which was previously stated as the upper limit that would cause extreme difficulty for hospitals. Recently, hospital officials said that the real limit is 1,300.
Out of 811 serious patients, 239 are in critical conditions, so the number of coronavirus deaths is expected to continue to rise significantly in the coming days.


Tags security