Mazel tov’s were resounding in room after room as newborns arrived to the joy of their families. But one room was quiet. A new baby was born but something was wrong. It seemed to be a heart defect. The doctors conferred. Top Israeli pediatric cardiologists were called in for consultations. The defect was a rare one and none of the specialists had any experience with it. A solution had to be found soon. Rabbi Shimon Rogoway, Director of Ezer Mizion’s Medical Referral Department, was brought into the picture. “Yes, I do know of a doctor who has experience in this type of defect but he’s in Boston. We need to get Meir Quinn involved.” Meir Quinn is the Director of Ezer Mizion’s Linked to Life, a WhatsApp group that networks to produce emergency rides to the hospital, get vital meds from here to there etc. etc. Linked to Life has members in almost every Jewish community on the planet. In moments, a posting went out: Urgent! Need to get medical disc from Haifa to Boston for consultation. Phones beeped and responses came in. Sara from Haifa picked up the disc and delivered to Naftali who was traveling to Bnei Brak. Naftali passed it to Shmuel in Bnei Brak who delivered it to Ronnie who was flying to Boston. Leah picked it up from Ronnie and within hours delivered the precious disc to the doctor. Soon cautious mazel tov’s will be heard in the infant’s room as a course for treatment is set up. As this tiny human being matures to adulthood he will never be aware of how many people around the globe rushed to his aid, each one playing his part in saving the life of a fellow Jew.
Ezer Mizion, whose logo incorporates the words: “Choosing Life” and whose prime division, its Bone Marrow Registry, has been saving lives since 1998, is always happy to cooperate with other organizations in facilitating a life-saving procedure.
We were grateful for the opportunity to do so when a call came in to the New York office from Renewal, a non-profit dedicated to assisting people suffering from various forms of kidney disease. A patient was desperately in need of a kidney transplant. A potential donor had been located in Ashdod but further testing was needed before the transplant could take place. Blood samples had to be drawn and delivered within 24 hours to the lab in New York. Various entities in Israel had been contacted but none were able to do so even though full payment for expedited service was offered. That is when the anxious call came from Renewal to the Ezer Mizion NY office. Can we help?
With Ezer Mizion’s Linked2Life program already in place, helping was simple. Even the 24-hour framework was a challenge but not insurmountable. Ezer Mizion’s “Linked to Life” knows how to get things done, with the help of the volunteers’ huge hearts, even in cases where financial and bureaucratic ‘bumps on the road’ abound.
Ezer Mizion’s International Bone Marrow Donor Registry provided the specialized blood tubes and complex paperwork for international transport. A volunteer, a nurse by profession, responded to the first request to draw the blood in Ashdod right after Shabbos was over. A second volunteer made a special trip to Ben Gurion Airport to deliver the test tubes to a third volunteer, who took them to New York. Within less than 24 hours, another international Linked to Life campaign was crowned with success.
Want to join? No matter where you live on the globe SMS: 011 972 52 580 8936