(Translation of an article published on April 4, 2022, in Reshuyot, The Israeli Portal for Local Authorities)
More hospital beds, more therapies and more jobs: the new Rehabilitation Hospital is set to open next month on the premises of ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran with 36 beds in each ward
A new Rehabilitation Hospital, the first of its kind in the South, is expected to open next month on the premises of the ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran Rehabilitation Village, located within the jurisdiction of the Merhavim Regional Council. The new hospital is expected to triple the number of rehabilitative hospital beds in the south and significantly improve existing rehabilitative medical services, thus alleviating pressure on the national level and curtailing the long wait for therapy and rehabilitative hospital beds for regional residents.
In its first stage, the hospital will include two departments, Neurological and Orthopedic Rehabilitation, and a Translational Research Center in conjunction with Ben-Gurion University. Likewise, the Rehabilitation Hospital will effect academic and research cooperation with Weizmann Institute of Science, Sheba Hospital and Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. In the future, the hospital will open a Geriatric Rehabilitation department, a sports therapy center, and a conference center. Each ward will include 36 hospital beds.
“The opening of the South’s first rehabilitation hospital, the third such hospital in Israel, will be a new and welcomed development for residents of the Negev,” said Dr. Tzaki Siev-Ner, director of the Rehabilitation Hospital. “The hospital will enable us to open sub-departments with innovative specialties in neurological and orthopedic rehabilitation that will enhance professionalism and contribute to the development of teams that will stand at the forefront in providing skilled care.”
Working with Ben-Gurion University and the Weizmann Institute of Science, the Rehabilitation Hospital will emphasize research and teaching that will be immediately translated into improved rehabilitative care. Hospital patients will benefit from state-of-the-art equipment offering advanced technology and unique care that broadens the range of therapies offered to residents of the Negev in need of multidisciplinary and general care.
The new hospital, approved for construction by the Israeli government in 2014, will enable an increase in the quantity of therapies provided in the present out-patient rehabilitation hospital operating in the rehabilitation village. Approximately 20,000 annual out-patient treatments will be provided to patients throughout the Negev region. In addition to the increase in number of hospital beds, the Rehabilitation Hospital is expected to provide dozens of prospects for professional employment in relative fields as well as general employment opportunities.
Currently, Israel suffers from a shortage of rehabilitative therapists, a scarcity especially apparent in the country’s southern region. The lack of manpower includes a shortage of physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and communication therapists. ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran hopes that the new Rehabilitation Hospital will encourage quality professionals to work in the hospital and make their home in the south. Likewise, it is hoped that together with active steps to encourage young people to engage in the much-needed professions, the new hospital will specifically entice local area youth to look towards these fields. In this regard, as an encouragement to young people from southern Israel to enter this field and spur an increase in the availability of therapists, the Association for Higher Education recently approved the opening of a new track for occupational therapy at Ben-Gurion University.
“The new Rehabilitation Hospital is a wonderful thing for the residents of the Negev,” says Avi Wortzman, CEO of ADI Negev-Nahalat Eran. “This is the first hospital to be built in the south after many, many years. It will significantly improve the quality and availability of care for area residents. We are certain that the opening of the new hospital will greatly advance rehabilitative medicine and health-related fields, and will bring excellent doctors and professional caregivers in health-related professions to work, study, integrate and live in the south and the Negev.”