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Sep 14, 2008

A hospital is not a tourist site

It is one thing when every time you go to a tourist site, they force you to walk through the gift shop, by placing the entrance and/or exit at the other side of it. It is another thing when a hospital does it.

A hospital is not a tourist attraction, and patients and their visitors should not be forced to walk through a gift shop, a mall or anything like that. If they want to place a mall on premises in order to earn more money for the hospital, that is fine. But it is wrong to force everyone to walk through it by placing it as part of the main entrance/exit of the hospital.

Haredim in Yerushalayim, led by the Eida Haredis, has filed a protest to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital over the recent construction in which they redesigned the hospital with a mall at the main entrance/exit, that you have to walk through to get into the hospital. Their are ways in that avoid the mall, but it seems to be through side doors and long and complicated routes through various parts of the hospital.

The basis for the protest is that there is content in the mall that is not compatible with the lifestyle of the Haredim.

I disagree with the reason for the protest. I do not consider that a good reason to fight with the hospital. I do think it is wrong to force people to walk through a mall on their way to getting treatment or visiting sick relatives. It is taking advantage of people in their time of distress. A hospital is not a tourist site.

If they want a mall on site, that is fine. Maybe people are there who would not mind the opportunity to shop a little. But to make the mall in the entrance in order to force every person to walk right through it? That is wrong.


  1. Reminds me of a business trip to Las Vegas some years ago. You literally couldn't get to the hotel check-in counter without going through the casino - and the way was not marked.

    Took me 15 minutes of wandering to find the counter. You couldn't enter or exit the hotel without passing through.

  2. why is having gift shops in the hospital lobby "not compatible with the lifestyle of the Haredim".
    is there something im missing?
    why do you call it a "mall"

  3. I call it a mall because that is what the article calls it. it does not say kiosk or gift shop, but "kanyon" which is a mall.

    what is not compatible? dot know. maybe they sell televisions, maybe magazines, maybe non-mehadrin food - I have no idea.

  4. What Akiva says (I keep agreeing with Akiva, it looks dangerous). In US nowadays you cannot get to the restroom without passing through some shopping opportunity.

    And we are copying all - good or bad from there, you know it.

  5. You left out the biggest problem with having the mall there:
    It takes much longer to get into the hospital since you have to now go through security twice.

  6. I can imagine girls injuring themselves just so they could shop in the hospital mall.

  7. my grandparents volunteered for many years in the hadasah giftshop, but i don't think it was a mall back then

  8. hospitals have always had gift shops. It is a good place to buy flowers for a patient or a book or some chocolates or a snack....
    but you did not HAVE to go in. and it was simply a gift shop. Turning a hospital into a mall, and forcing everyone who comes in to go through it is wrong.

  9. I would guess that the reason the charaydim don't want it is because there prob will be clothing stores for ladies and therfore pictures of ladies on the wall that they would consider very not tznius.

  10. For clarification: This is not a small gift shop we're talking about .It's a proper mall, it's even called a "kanion". It has a food court, shops, a pharmacy, the obligatory Aroma coffee shop. The only thing it's missing is a movie theater.

    What's really cute is that it has it's own parking lot, that's actually separate from the Haddassah parking lot, but much closer to the hospital then the regular one. You pass it and think "oh, that's nice and close parking". It even has a nice elevator to take you right up to th e mall entrance.

    Which is all great, until you realize it costs an extra 5 shekel/hour, in addition to the 12 shekel Haddasah parking charge. Lovely.

    I agree with you Rafi- right protest, wrong reasoning.

  11. "The only thing it's missing is a movie theater."

    don't worry. at the first sign of financial instability, the mall will offer to buy out the hospital and turn into the middle east's largest movie theater

  12. Actually, it as the other way around- the mall was/probably still is having financial problems. Would you believe people visiting the hospital just aren't in the mood for a shopping spree?

  13. I had to take one onfmy kids to HEK emergancy room recently. You can't imagine what a crazy thing it is to walk through a mall when you need to get to the emergancy room! (the non-mall route is longer and not marked with signs) I think it's total chuzpah that people are forced to walk a long time and be bombarded with other people who are out having a good time, when you are in an emergancy situation! I happy for the doctors that they now have good food easily available, but for the rest of us, itsmegushna!


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