The honored president of Israel, Sir Yitzchak Herzog, visited the Barzilai University Medical Center accompanied by the director general of his office, Mr. Ayal Shwiki, during Hanukka, along with the Mayor of Ashkelon, Mr. Tomer Glam and Mrs. Sofia Beilin, acting mayor. Joined them from the Barzilai Medical Center the hospital management and teams of doctors, nurses, social workers and administrative managers.
Prof. Levy, president of the hospital, summarized the intense work of the hospital in the different fields and talked about the new and ahead projects of developing medical services, technology and infrastructures. Prof Levy made a review of the preparedness of the hospital for emergency situations and mass events and showed a presentation of some of the events that occurred during the last years and talked about the dilemmas and difficulties of running the hospital.
President Yitzchak Herzog asked the hospital teams about their assignments and the burden of work, their feelings, their relations with the patients and their families and finally about the overcrowded rooms and corridors.
Then after, the president visited the new neurology department, met the medical staff and listened to a summary about the activity of the department including the new service of cerebral angiography and angioplasty. Following that he visited the fortified surgical building, the emergency department and the fortified underground hospital.
President Herzog ended his visit by celebrating lightening of candles of Hanukka with the hospital staff, patients and Ashkelon juniors that was organized by "Wa Smachta" organization led by Avi and Riki Lerer.
Before leaving, President Hertzog said eagerly in his speech:
"The great change the hospital has done since my last visit in 2014 is very great and remarkable, and what makes the hospital one of the best hospitals in Israel is the wonderful staff who works day by day and hour by hour. I wish that the chairman of the hospital will continue to make his dreams come true for the sake of all the patients of the area. I want to thank the non-profit foundation "Wa Samachta" for its givingness and love for the sake of Israel and for the citizens of the area. May this place succeed and flourish.
After his visit, Prof Levy said that the visit of the Honored President of Israel was very important and empowered us. The President and the Mayor saw and emphasized the positive permutations that were done in the hospital during the last few years and heard about the changes in the constructions and processes for the sake of the patients. He added that the president of Israel was very impressed form the devotion of the staff. Before leaving the hospital President Herzog took part in lightening the Hanukka candles and noted the big light that this visit brought to the hospital staff.