Operation COVID-19 – Rambam Cooperates with Top Secret Military Units
Yesterday evening, a small, select group of soldiers belonging to the Special Operations Unit of Israel’s Intelligence Division visited Rambam Health Care Campus in Haifa, Israel. Armed with work tools and electronic equipment, the soldiers briefly took control of the rooms in which the hospital recently raced to establish a second dedicated and isolated coronavirus department.
The Special Operation Unit brought a technological solution for the challenge faced by COVID-19 isolation wards, by creating a virtual connection between the control center where doctors and nurses are stationed and the staff working in patient’s rooms. Dr. Michael Halberthal, Rambam’s Director General, described the Special Operations Unit’s initiative as both “vital and heartwarming.
Up until now, patients in good condition had a telephone and a direct video connection with the command center, and could communicate with staff about their care. However, such communication is more challenging when the medical staff had to enter rooms and care for patients in moderate or critical condition. In that case, they had to communicate with the control room medical team via a mobile phone while fully clothed in personal protective gear – making communication quite difficult at times.
For several hours, the soldiers went from room by room, installing new audio systems—each with a convenient tablet interface and one-tap access. From now on, all medical staff entering these rooms can easily conduct conversations with the command center via speakers installed in each room. “We are constantly looking for ways to optimize work in the isolated department and are learning while on the move,” explained Dr. Halberthal. “The goal is to provide quality care while ensuring staff safety. These initiatives from technology companies and military units, are an amazing Israeli phenomenon.”