A nurse was in moderate but stable condition after being stabbed by a patient at the Shmuel Ha’Rofe Hospital in the central Israel town of Beer Yaakov on Monday evening.
The suspect, an asylum-seeker from Eritrea in his thirties who was a patient at the hospital, was arrested and taken in for questioning by police.
In response to the attack, chair of the nurses’ union, Ilana Cohen, called for a strike on Wednesday.
“We must put an end to violence in the health system,” Cohen said. “We will shut down the entire system on Wednesday to say clearly — enough violence!”
The Ministry of Health strongly condemned the attack and ordered security increased at health institutions.
“We are committed to the safety and security of treatment staff, and we will work with the police and the Public Security Ministry to ensure that such cases do not recur,” said Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman.
The attack came the day after a woman was given a sentence of five months of community service for assaulting hospital security staff and others during a September incident.
During the sentencing the judge noted that “violence against medical staff and security guards has become widespread and it is incumbent on the court to protect medical staff.”