The labor strike at Hadassah Medical Organization's Ein Karem and Mount Scopus campuses continued on Thursday, as most operating rooms and outpatient clinics in addition to several other wards remained empty. Physicians announced that they would continue to function on a reduced weekend schedule, while nurses and administrative staff were working at emergency capacity.
Nurses said they were not showing up to staff outpatient clinics, diagnostic institutes and day hospitals. Operating rooms were functioning only on emergency schedules and only emergency surgeries would be carried out. Emergency rooms, intensive care units, delivery rooms and dialysis labs were functioning on a reduced schedule.
"In internal wards, with 35 sick patients, there are only three out of the seven nurses normally on staff. They are exhausted, the distress is massive. We are asking family members to remain alongside patients to provide assistance, and we are asking people not to come to the emergency room. We can only provide medications and life-saving treatment at this point," said Hadassah Nurses' Committee Chairwoman Tsila Gera.
"At any given moment, if our wages are paid 100 percent, we will go back to work," Gera said.
The strike entered its 13th day on Thursday as the Hadassah administration continued to withhold the salaries of some 6,000 hospital personnel.
Avi Nissankoren, chairman of the Histadrut's Trade Union division, called on the Hadassah administration and the Finance Ministry Wednesday to "pay the full salaries of the employees and launch immediate, intensive negotiations to rehabilitate Hadassah."
The Hadassah administration said it would not try to issue an injunction against striking workers to force them to negotiations. Attorneys from both sides have put out feelers, but workers committees have said that hospital staff will refuse to return to their normal jobs until their salaries are paid in full.
Meanwhile, Professor Shlomo Mor-Yosef -- Hadassah's former director, who left in 2011 to become director-general of the National Insurance Institute -- was fending off accusations that he was responsible for the hospital deficit which mushroomed over the last several years spawning the current crisis, while apparently taking generous bonuses.
"During my term, I dealt with deficits and I was part of the last recovery program in 2009, a program that designed the system for the duration of my time. They're crucifying and attacking me on a personal level," he said.
While Mor-Yosef had shown up at the Knesset Finance Committee for talks covering the national insurance deficit, in the end those talks were moved aside in light of the ongoing Hadassah crisis.
Mor-Yosef reportedly received a bonus of 1.8 million shekels ($510,000) and a double-salary bonus of 280,000 shekels ($80,000). He currently receives a monthly salary that hovers between 135,000-140,000 shekels ($38,000-$40,000) before taxes -- 75,000 shekels ($21,000) from Hadassah and 60,000-65,000 shekels ($17,000-19,000) from his job at the NII.