Members of the committee that oversees the allocation and management of shortened phone numbers in the Ministry of Communications officially recommended to the Minister of Communications, Yoaz Hendel, not to cancel the number 1221 that has been allocated to United Hatzalah’s Dispatch and Command Center. United Hatzalah’s shortened number of 1221, serves as the organization’s method of receiving phone calls from those who are injured or sick and in need of emergency medical care, as well as requests for humanitarian aid. The Health Ministry, under the leadership of the former Health Minister Yuli Edelstein, also recommended to the committee not to cancel the number of 1221.
The demand by Magen David Adom to cancel United Hatzalah’s number of 1221, arrived at the committee after MDA filed a lawsuit with the High Court of Justice insisting that the number be revoked. The court erased the appeal to do so in their final decision and the discussion with regard to the emergency number was left to the Ministry of Communication to decide.
President and Founder of United Hatzalah Eli Beer said, “The decision by the professional committee in charge of shortened numbers proves once again just how important the lifesaving work of United Hatzalah truly is, especially our phone number 1221 and our Dispatch and Command Center. This decision refutes many attempts by Magen David Adom to limit our effectiveness and our ability to respond to medical emergencies quickly. MDA has to learn that there is no monopoly on lifesaving, nor will there ever be. Through this decision, the government ministries are making it clear to MDA that they are the regulators when it comes to the issues of public health, safety, and communications, and not MDA, which is just one corporation that is subordinate to them.”
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