The Schmooze

Soroka — A Preemie Oasis in the Negev

“It took a famous baby to die pre-term — Patrick Bouvier Kennedy, son of John and Jacqueline Kennedy — to make the call to the world that babies matter,” said Dr. Agneta Golan, Director of Soroka Medical Center Neonatal Intensive Care Unit to the guests at the American Friend of Soroka Medical Center Gala Benefit at the New York Palace Hotel. “I am here to speak out for my ‘Kennedys of the Negev’…. When the alarms go on, we run to shelters…. I am sure that because Israel matters to you, my babies matter to you.”

Emceed by Dan Abrams, co-anchor of ABC’s “Nightline,”—who informed he was a cancer survivor and that his mother (who was present) is “a Sabra committed to all things related to Israel, “ the speaker roster included Ido Aharoni, Israel’s consul general in New York who stated: “Whenever something happens in Israel, people in New York feel as if it happened in New York — and visa versa.” He informed: “Soroka” — Israel’s 4th largest hospital with 1,000 beds, serving one million, will eventually have to serve a population of nearly six million…provide medical service and health care to an entire region which we all agree is the future of the State of Israel.”

Citing Ben Gurion — whose statue stands in Siroka Hospital’s lobby — keynote speaker and recipient of Siroka’s “Stateswoman for Health Award,” Admiral Susan Blumenthal, said: “’In Israel, in order to be a realist, you must believe in miracles’ and this hospital is a miracle in the Middle East.” Answering “Why did I become a doctor?”, uber blonde, blue-eyed, pink-cheeked Blumenthal — who spoke at length about global health issues — said: “In my first year in college my mother developed breast cancer…my last year of medical school it had metastasized to her spine. She lived long enough to see her daughter become a doctor…eventually assistant surgeon general and one of the few women Jewish admirals in the service.”

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Soroka — A Preemie Oasis in the Negev

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