Welcome to Real Life Rescues, a podcast that goes behind the scenes and takes an in-depth look into the operational and personal accounts of EMS first responders from Israel’s largest fully volunteer EMS provider United Hatzalah. The podcast is hosted by EMT-P (Paramedic) Dov Maisel and EMT-B (EMT) Raphael Poch.
Dov Maisel, in addition to being an innovator, volunteer and world-renowned expert in disaster management, has dedicated his life to saving the lives of others and is one of the founders of United Hatzalah of Israel. Formerly an army medic in the Israeli Defense Forces, Dov served as a combat paramedic in four different wars. He has worked as an EMT, dispatcher, ambulance driver and paramedic. In addition to his duties as one of the leading EMS first responders for United Hatzalah, Dov now serves as the organization’s vice president of operations. He invented what is now used as United Hatzalah’s uber-like GPS -based dispatch system which locates and sends the closest EMT to the medical emergency. Dov lead United Hatzalah’s international relief missions in Haiti, Nepal, Houston and Florida, following the devastating hurricanes of Harvey and Irma, and most recently to Surfside, Florida, following the Champlain Towers collapse.
Raphael Poch, in addition to being one of the organization’s 6,000 volunteer EMTs, is a member of the organization’s ambucycle unit, Psychotrauma and Crisis Response Unit, and serves as the Gush Etzion regional coordinator of the organization’s Ten Kavod project, wherein EMTs visit elderly people in their communities once a week to provide wellness checks and social visits to alleviate loneliness.
In today’s episode, Dov and Raphael will discuss the organization’s recent operational agenda to implement mass-casualty incident training to all of the volunteers throughout the country in response to the three large-scale MCIs that took place in Israel this year including the largest civilian tragedy in the history of the country which occurred in Meron on April 30th, 2021. They will take an in-depth look into what parts of an MCI lead to the most confusion and difficulty, how the organization trains to become better at dealing with those critical issues. Later in the episode, they give an in-depth first-hand account of what took place during the Meron MCI and how it was different from pretty much every other MCI out there.