(Save a Child's Heart/Courtesy) Save a Child's Heart/Courtesy
Save a Child's Heart

An Israeli organization that normally performs heart surgery on impoverished children is teaming up with a Holon-based medical center to fight COVID-19.

By United with Israel Staff

Israel’s Save a Child’s Heart’s (SACH) organization recently completed vital heart surgery on its last child patient until the coronavirus pandemic ends, the non-profit recently announced.

SACH will instead team up with Wolfson Medical Center (WMC), a Holon facility that serves 500,000 people in central Israel, to “make space for patients and raise money for essential medical supplies needed for the hospital’s fight against COVID-19,” the organization said in a statement.

The last patient to undergo a SACH operation was a two-year-old boy named Daniel who was brought by SACH from Ethiopia to Israel at the beginning of 2020 for lifesaving heart surgery.

“He underwent successful heart surgery today, and will now be recovering at the SACH children’s home alongside a group of children from Zanzibar, Ethiopia, Iraq, Morocco and the Palestinian Authority,” said SACH.

WMC remains on the front line of the corona fight in the Jewish state, but needs more space within its facility to treat COVID-19 patients.

“To help meet this crisis, SACH has been called upon to speed up construction of its new Children’s Hospital – originally due to open in October – to mid-April. SACH will dedicate the new hospital to housing pediatric patients from WMC to free up beds there for COVID-19 patients,” said the organization.

Dr Lior Sasson, SACH lead surgeon, commented, “As the world continues to face these unprecedented times, it’s our mission as a global organization to help fight COVID-19 to save lives. SACH built this new Children’s Hospital to enable us to treat more children and train more doctors from developing countries. That mission is on hold during this crisis, but we can save Israeli patients who will have nowhere to go if we don’t get this done,” said Dr Lior Sasson, SACH Lead Surgeon.

SACH ” was founded in 1995 at the Wolfson Medical Center to improve the quality of pediatric cardiac care for children in developing countries and create centers of competence in these countries” and has provided care to over 5,400 children from 62 countries in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Europe and South America.

SACH has also trained upwards of 120 medical professionals from these countries and was honored with special consultative status by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (ECOSOC), earning the prestigious United Nations Population Award in 2018.

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