Eli Beer, the president of Israel’s United Hatzalah ambulance service, who is currently hospitalized in serious condition in Miami after contracting the coronavirus, lambasted Health Minister Yaakov Litzman from his hospital bed for sidelining his medics.
Litzman has refused to allow Hatzalah’s 6,000 volunteers to play any role in assisting the Health Ministry and Magen David Adom (MDA) with conducting virus tests. He recently argued in a Channel 12 interview that Hatzalah staff were “less professional” than MDA staff.
“He is a spiteful person, an evil person,” Beer said in a video message picked up by the Ynet news site. “I really hope he isn’t health minister in the next government. The man has been fighting United Hatzalah for several years. A bad man without a good heart, who only looks out for his own interests.”
Litzman’s office responded by wishing Beer a speedy recovery, adding that “Magen David Adom is the State of Israel’s national emergency organization, and as such is the only organization authorized to manage emergency situations. If it requires reinforcement it can operate any other body that meets the criteria.
“Attempts to smear the activity of Israel’s emergency apparatus with false statements should be rejected.”
United Hatzalah said that since recording the video, Beer had been sedated and was placed on a ventilator over the weekend as his condition worsened.
“Eli Beer is in a struggle due to a confirmed diagnosis of Covid-19. On Friday evening he was put on a ventilator to assist his breathing. We expect Eli to be sedated for two days to two weeks and expect he will experience a full (if slow and difficult) recovery. We are grateful for the outstanding care Eli is receiving at the hospital in Miami, and for the remarkable support that United Hatzalah supporters are providing for him in Miami,” the organization said, posting another video from his bedside in which he implores continued support for Hatzalah.