Two hours after he was born Wednesday in the southern Gaza Strip, Malek turned blue. Doctors performed an emergency echocardiogram and saw he is missing his tricuspid valve, has a “delicate” mitral valve, and critical pulmonic stenosis. They gave Malek prostaglandin to keep open the patent ductus arteriosus by which a baby receives oxygen in the womb, until he could reach Israel for emergency surgery.
We received his report on Thursday afternoon, and turned to our partner hospitals to see who could accept Malek most quickly, even though Israel is largely shuttered this week due to the Passover holiday. Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem agreed to admit Malek, and via an ICU ambulance he safely reached Hadassah late this morning.