In what many are calling a medical miracle, Hagaon Harav Chaim Ovadia Yosef, shlita, has regained full consciousness.
Prof. Dan Gilon, the Rav’s cardiologist, announced the dramatic improvement at a press conference in Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Yerushalayim on Wednesday.
“He sleeps a lot, but is fully conscious,” Prof. Gilon said. “He is still hooked to respiration apparatus, but is far less dependent on it.”
Prof. Gilon said the improvement was more significant than the “minor improvements” reported earlier in the week.
“He does not speak, as he is still connected to a respirator, but he understands a lot of what is happening around him. We’re cautiously optimistic.”
Earlier, in an interview with the Kol Barama radio station, Prof. Gilon elaborated and said
the Rav had opened his eyes, regained his hearing, and was responsive to his surroundings.
The cardiologist was optimistic that the 93-year-old Rav had not sustained any brain damage. Harav Yosef had been on a respirator for more than a week, after a substantial worsening of his health.
Gilon said he did not rule out the possibility that the Rav would be able to speak again.
“The chances aren’t great, but they are far better than they were a week ago.” It was not out of the question that the Rav could be sent home at some point in the coming weeks, if his condition continued to improve as it has in the past several days, Gilon said.
The public is asked to continue davening for Harav Chaim Ovadia Yosef ben Georgia.
An atzeres tefillah for the Rav was scheduled for Wednesday night in Beitar Illit. Thousands of Jews from across Israel , from a wide range of backgrounds, were expected to attend.