The coronavirus has caused great havoc worldwide. Most people believed that the development of new drugs, medical devices, and cutting-edge treatments have overcome most maladies. In some ways, COVID-19 was a wake-up call.
COVID-19 was a shock not only to the public but to the medical establishment as well. It was largely unprepared for such a pandemic, and it had to adapt very quickly to the new realities.
Dr. Yaron Mushkat is the general manager of the Meir Medical Center, which is part of the Clalit Health Services.
In a talk with The Jerusalem Post, he explains how Meir Hospital met the tremendous challenges posed by the pandemic and how it will affect the medical establishment in the future.
He says, “The pandemic surprised the whole world.
The medical establishment is prepared to deal with outbreaks of epidemics, but COVID-19 was something new and on a completely different level, and it presented us with enormous challenges.
From the outset, it was clear that we had to create isolation wards to prevent those infected from spreading the virus and to provide the medical teams with maximum protection while treating the sick. We were facing something new, and we had to train the medical staff on how to treat the COVID patients in the best way possible.
The medical teams were working under extreme pressure both physically and emotionally.
They worked long hours together under strained working conditions, coupled with the emotional stress of dealing with a highly infectious lethal disease.”History has proven that wars promote new technological developments. Does that hold true for pandemics as well?Absolutely. The pandemic brought about the development of new technologies to treat the coronavirus. The vaccines are one of the examples of the biotechnological developments, but there were other innovations that can be described as hi-tech developments.For example, a remote control monitoring room that monitored the health of each corona patient, thereby minimizing the risk to the medical staff.
A new mask was also developed that is constantly ventilated by clean air, which minimizes the chances of infection for the medical staff. I also want to point out that Meir tried out new treatments, and we have our own R&D activities.
New medical technologies are very costly. If you want to acquire an expensive new medical device, do you require the authorization of Clalit?We are proud to be a part of the Clalit Health Services, the largest medical organization in the country. It assesses the medical efficiency of new medical devices and the cost effectiveness of the medical equipment we need and they finance our purchases.
We are also greatly helped by the generosity of our donors. These funds are also used to purchase new cutting-edge medical devices.
The Meir Medical Center is well known for the way it treats Israel’s Olympic athletes. Is it different from the way you treat other patients?The Meir Medical Center has become a byword in all aspects of Sports Medicine.
Our medical center prides itself on the medical treatment it provides for Olympic athletes. The treatment is the same for all our patients, but we are aware that in sports, especially Olympic sports, the treatment must be as rapid as possible because athletes cannot afford to miss their training sessions. That is why we make it a point complete the treatment as soon as possible.We have been treating Israel’s Olympic athletes for the past 20 years.
We are very proud of the comprehensive medical treatment we give them. We monitor their development and accompany them on tournaments in Israel and abroad and thus included Olympic tournaments.Does Meir specialize in any particular medical branch?Yes, many. For example, we specialize in pulmonary ailments, in minimally invasive lung surgery, and lung oncology treatment. We also offer state-of-the-art cardiac treatment. And we have a very well-developed multi disciplinary trauma department which offers treatment for patients who have experienced gunshot wounds, traffic accidents, and the like.We are one of the leading hospitals specializing in obstetrics and pediatric medicine.
Our delivery rooms and pediatric department offer the most up to date professional holistic treatment available the world over.Our pediatric treatment is excellent and every year we get the highest grading of the Israeli ministry of health for the treatment of children. Our pediatric wards supply health needs of children over a wide geographical area.The Meir Medical Center is at the forefront of medical developments and is one of the leading medical centers in Israel.
Year after year we get top marks from the Ministry of Health for the quality of our medical teams and the quality of our treatment.I am rightfully proud for the privilege that was given me to manage a medical center where the all the staff medical and other consider it their home and do all in their power make it the best medical center.This article was written in cooperation with Meir Medical Center.