Ariel Jerozolimski
Ariel Jerozolimski
Photographer
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PHOTO ESSAY: Hadassah’s COVID warriors

Visiting the coronavirus ward at the Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, I observed doctors, nurses, and other staff. They are truly heroic - and very tired
Coronavirus Intensive Care Unit Nurse Ilana Abitbol assists a patient connected to an ECMO extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem.
Nurse Ilana Abitbol assists a patient connected to an ECMO extracorporeal oxygenation machine at the Corona Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo:Ariel Jerozolimski

The coronavirus is still here.

The numbers keep dropping and sometimes we forget that in the last year-and-a-half more than 8,000 Israelis have died from COVID-19, including 11 in the past day.

If such a number of casualties had been caused by Hamas, Islamic Jihad or Hezbollah we certainly would be at war. Indeed, we are at war, but one in which many citizens have decided not to fight back. Or, even worse, are actually helping the enemy. This is a war that is possible to win by getting vaccinated, using masks and maintaining hygiene, but many in the population haven’t taken the vaccine. Some of these have justifiable medical reasons, while many others just don’t care that they are endangering their loved ones and society in general. The vast majority of the patients in the intensive care units of Israel’s hospitals are citizens who have chosen not to get the vaccine.

We are used to wearing masks, but they are still uncomfortable. Imagine the doctors and nurses who wear them through 12-hour shifts.

Imagine them working with facial protection that makes it difficult to see.

Imagine them wearing extra-protective clothing for long hours.

Imagine them working long hours with gloves.

Imagine them taking care of their patients for hours without going to the toilet.

Imagine them working without taking a break for coffee or even a cup of water.

Imagine them washing and bathing the patients while wearing all that equipment.

Imagine them changing diapers.

Imagine them resuscitating a patient in these conditions.

Imagine them breathing in contaminated air.

Imagine them working with the risk of getting sick and bringing the virus home to their families.

I spent part of a shift with the amazing and outstanding staff of the Corona Intensive Care Unit and the Corona Dept. at the Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. One shift spent with all this very uncomfortable equipment is equal to many regular shifts. These doctors, nurses, technicians, nursing aides, and cleaners are fighting an invisible, but lethal enemy.

After this long struggle, they’re really exhausted and need support — support that’s very simple for us to give: it’s called a vaccine. Get vaccinated.

Dr. Marc Romain, Senior Physician at the Coronavirus Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem checks a patient in the unit. Photo:Ariel Jerozolimski
Nurse Ilana Abitbol assists a patient connected to an ECMO extracorporeal oxygenation machine at the Corona Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem.Photo:Ariel Jerozolimski
Nurse Ilana Abitbol checks the pupils of a patient at the Corona Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo:Ariel Jerozolimski
Critical care patients connected to ECMO extracorporeal oxygenation machines require the assistance of big crews.In the picture: Corona Intensive Care Unit staff at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center treat a patient.
Left to right: Dr. Ron Edri, Nurse Abed Shalabi, Nurse Or Ezra and ECMO Technician Yuval Shtark.
Photo:Ariel Jerozolimski
Nurses and physicians assisting a critical care patient at the Corona Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
Nurse Tamar Drori prepares a medicine at the Corona Dept. at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo:Ariel Jerozolimski
Dr. Marc Romain, Senior Physician at the Corona Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem wears an extra protective coat before treating a patient with a CPE resistant bacteria. Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
Dr. Marc Romain (left) and Dr. Ron Edri (right) next to the bed of a patient with Covid19 virus at the Corona Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
Nurse Or Ezra treats a patient at the Corona Intensive Care Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
Nurse Tamar Drori checks the blood saturation of a Covid19 patient at the Corona Dept. at the Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo; Ariel Jerozolimski
A man visits his father at the Corona Dept. at the Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem.
Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
A woman visits her husband at the Corona Dept. at the Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem.
Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
Nurses of the Corona Dept. at the Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
ECMO extracorporeal oxygenation machine that provides prolonged cardiac and respiratory support connected to a patient with Corona virus at Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Jerusalem. Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski
About the Author
Born in Uruguay in 1965 and lives in Israel since 1984. Since 1990 he worked as a freelance photographer for Israeli and international media including AFP, Bloomberg, Chicago Tribune, Stern Magazine, El Pais, and Xinhua. In 1999 Jerozolimski joined the leading Israeli business daily, Globes,as a staff photographer till 2009. He was the chief photographer for The Jerusalem Post between 1999 and 2010. His work has been exhibited at the Berlin Museum, "Israel Under Attack" about the First Gulf War. He's also participated in a number of group exhibitions. His photos have also been featured in such books as A Day in the Life of the IDF, 24 Hours at Prison, and Photographers in the Street. In addition to his photographic work, he is a licensed tour guide in English, Spanish and Portuguese and organizes photographic tours.
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