With over 200,000 residents, Ashdod has for years asked the government to help it get its own hospital – and the city’s wishes came true this week, with the opening of Assuta Ashdod. The hospital, which belongs to the Maccabi health fund organization, is open to all, said Professor Shuki Shemer, the head of the Assuta health organization.
Shemer called the opening of the hospital “dramatic,” as it was the first new hospital to open in Israel in 40 years. “We will be using the most advanced technology and treatment programs,” he said at the hospital’s opening ceremony. “The hospital was planned to ensure that the privacy and dignity of all patients will be fully observed.”
The hospital is being opened in stages, with the first section containing the outpatient clinics. The first patient to be treated at the clinics was Alma Shemesh, an Ashdod resident who said that “we have been waiting many years for this. I am very honored to be the first patient.” No longer, she added, would she have to travel to Ashkelon or Rehovot, which until this week had been the closest cities with full-service hospitals.
Among the services to be offered by the hospital, Health Ministry officials said, will be an advanced cancer clinic, which will feature advanced radiotherapy systems.