2009-12-15 | China Daily New York Bureau
The Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer is the largest hospital in Israel founded in 1948 along with the fledging state of Israel to treat the wounded of Israel's War of Independence. But now it has become a beacon of hope in the Middle East because it treats Jews as well as Palestinians and other Arabs.
Stephan Bassett, executive director of the American Friends of Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer, which is the largest fundraiser for the medical facility, said granting Yue-sai Kan the title means that she would become a role model and a leader in China and the Western world.
"It is also because China is one of the most important places in the world today, including in medicine research. We recognize the importance of China even it's not in the Middle East," said Bassett.
He said the medical center is a peace hospital, with over 80 percent of patients being Israeli, Palestinian and Arab civilians, many of whom are also treated with the hospital funding. Only 15 percent or less the people treated are in the military.
Yue-Sai Kan, who flew to New York a few days ago from her China home in Shanghai, said she was very very thrilled to receive the honor.
The television icon and once a successful cosmetics businesswoman said she was deeply moved after hearing the great stories of humanity about the medical center.
The US$1,000 per person evening event at the landmark Capitale restaurant in Manhattan drew hundreds of attendants, many of whom also made text message pledges of their donations during the event.
Here you will meet secular and ultra orthodox Israeli being treated along side Palestininas, other Arabs, soldiers and civilians, Cypriots, Turks and people from every continent, said Zeev Rotstein, CEO of Sheba Medical Center.
"Every year, hundreds of Palestinian children from Gaza are treated in the hospital, many as charity cases," he said, adding that the hospital also train doctors from all over the world, including from China.
Situated on a 150-acre campus on the outskirts of Tel Aviv, Sheba Medical Center comprises 120 departments and clinics and 1,700 beds, employing more than 1,300 physicians, 2,400 nurses and 3,300 other healthcare workers and scientists. It is also a medical research powerhouse, where at least 25 percent of all Israeli medical clinical research is conducted.