These doctors are providing Holocaust survivors with free treatment

In January, it was reported that some 17,000 survivors passed away in Israel in 2020, including 900 who succumbed to COVID-19.

A Holocaust survivor receives free treatment from a doctor (photo credit: DANIEL BAR ON)
A Holocaust survivor receives free treatment from a doctor
(photo credit: DANIEL BAR ON)
A group of 600 Israeli doctors, interns, specialists and department heads has come together to provide medical care to Holocaust survivors for free amid the coronavirus pandemic, which has made it much harder to properly care for those in need.
The group has been operating for nearly a year. They visit survivors at home if needed and provide accessible medical treatment free of charge.
The initiative was created after a few doctors noticed that the overload on the country's health system created by the pandemic had caused long waiting times in hospitals and clinics and led to many Holocaust survivors missing important treatments. The fear of leaving their homes and contracting the virus themselves contributed to this concern.   
The initiative began with a single Facebook post by one of those doctors, Dr. Tamara Kolitz. During the first wave of the pandemic, she would volunteer to visit Holocaust survivors while providing them with medical consultation.
Eventually, Kolitz suggested establishing a voluntary group of doctors who would continue what she had been doing and would assure that no survivor is left unattended. 
Dr. Tamara Kolitz (Credit: Inbal Marmari)Dr. Tamara Kolitz (Credit: Inbal Marmari)
The result is a donation-based medical organizational body called Lemaanam (for their sake). Lemaanam can be reached at *3191
"The response was incredible and wonderful," Kolitz said. "I was surprised by the number of people who responded."
Dr. Orly Barak-Tzafrir from the Ichilov Hospital noted the importance of this project and the effect it has had on her.
"I read about Lemaanam on Facebook. The first thought that raced through my mind was 'how did no one think about this earlier?'" she said. "I remember the first time lifting a patient's sleeve and seeing the number on her arm... only when you dive into a conversation with them and hear the painful memories, can you really be exposed to the pain, fear and loss that have followed them until this day.
"Volunteering and taking part in this initiative is my way of being grateful for Holocaust survivors and their brave lives," Barak-Tzafrir added.
There are approximately 170,000 survivors living in Israel today.  
In January, it was reported that some 17,000 of them passed away in Israel in 2020, including 900 who succumbed to COVID-19. Tens of thousands of them have still not received the coronavirus vaccine because they could not leave their homes or were afraid to leave.