Israeli organizations sent supplies to Chabad synagogues in China, which will distribute the aid in a country facing a devastating virus that has killed hundreds.
By Abigail Klein Leichman, Israel21c.org
Israel’s Magen David Adom national emergency network has contributed 2,000 masks and 200 full protection kits to help prevent the spread of coronavirus in China.
The special suits, masks, glasses, shoes and hat covers, donated at the request of Chabad-Lubavitch rabbis in China, will be distributed at the 14 Chabad House branches there.
Humanitarian aid organization IsraAID also sent a shipment of emergency medical supplies and protective gear to the Chinese Ministry of Health on the last flight from Tel Aviv to mainland China. This project was done with partners Israel-China Chamber of Commerce, INNONATION and David Ashkenazi of ICCB Capital.
IsraAID co-CEO Yotam Polizer said IsraAID “will continue to monitor the situation, and may launch a secondary response including Mental Health and Psychosocial Support for humanitarian aid workers and first responders working in the area, focusing on stress relief.”
The novel coronavirus 2019-nCoV, first reported from Wuhan on December 31, has now infected 17,489 people globally – the vast majority in China – and killed 362. Today, China issued an urgent appeal for protective medical equipment.
Chabad representative Rabbi Eliyahu Rosenberg from Guangzhou took off for China on Sunday with all the MDA equipment and landed in Hong Kong on Monday.
“Magen David Adom, as Israel’s national EMS organization and the country’s largest humanitarian organization, immediately responded to Chabad’s request in China to help deal with the spread of the coronavirus in their country,” said MDA Director General Eli Bin.
Bin said the Chabad emissaries will make the gear available to traveling Israelis and local residents alike.
Rosenberg thanked Bin and his representatives “for their prompt help and response. From the moment the call was made to MDA, the treatment and responsiveness were extremely fast.”
Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu instructed the Biological Institute and the Health Ministry to work on producing a vaccine for 2019-nCoV and to set up a vaccination network in Israel.
Polizer said, “We are all very concerned about the spread of Coronavirus, and we are grateful for all the courageous work done by Chinese medical teams. It’s important for us to do our part by sending relief supplies and sharing our expertise in the field of stress management and trauma reduction.”