‘Kochav Meir’ Field Hospital Shows Israel ‘Did Not Stand Aside’ in Ukraine, Says Lapid
The thousands of Ukrainian refugees treated at Israel’s field hospital in western Ukraine are “living witnesses to the fact that we did not stand aside” as the country was invaded by Russia, Israel’s Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said Sunday.
“Israel was and remains the only country to send an entire hospital into Ukraine,” Lapid remarked at a ceremony honoring the facility, which operated for six weeks in the Ukrainian town of Mostyska, close to the border with Poland.
Some 210 staff treated more than 6,000 Ukrainian refugees, including 750 children, at the 66-bed center — dubbed “Kochav Meir” (Shining Star) in honor of former Prime Minister Golda Meir, who was born in Ukraine. The hospital performed a number of surgeries in field conditions, including a Caesarean section, together with local medical staff.
“It may not have looked this way from the outside, but this was the highest standard of a field hospital in the world,” Lapid elaborated. “A fully digital hospital, with advanced telemedicine capabilities, and with the ability to go down into a shelter during an air raid siren — but to continue treating.”
Also participating in the ceremony were Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz and Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov, as well as senior staff and medical crews from Israel’s largest hospitals, who were part of the mission in Ukraine.
Horowitz described the field hospital as the “pinnacle” of Israeli diplomacy, and an example of the state’s efforts to provide humanitarian aid to partner countries facing emergencies.
“We have a moral obligation to reach out our arm to Ukraine in the face of the massacres and brutal war crimes that are still being carried out on their soil,” said Horowitz. “We will continue to help as we are part of a family of democratic peoples. ”
Lapid announced Sunday that in two weeks, a Ukrainian medical delegation from Lviv is expected to arrive in Israel to receive training in emergency medicine.