Amid growing concerns regarding shortages of equipment and supplies due to the coronavirus pandemic, we applaud the United States Department of Health and Human Services and its Office for Civil Rights for ensuring that fair and equitable care be provided to all Americans in a recently released bulletin.
Acknowledging the ongoing Public Health Emergency, the March 28th bulletin reminds all HHS funded health programs and activities that the law prohibits discrimination against individuals because of their race, color, national origin, age, existing disabilities or quality of life assessments.
“We commend President Trump, HHS Secretary Alex Azar and Director Severino for taking concrete steps to protect the dignity of all human life,” said Chayim Aruchim President, Rabbi S...
Johnson & Johnson says it could have a COVID-19 vaccine available by early 2021 with the capability to produce as many as a billion doses. In a press release, the company says it’s planning to start clinical trials in September and has begun investing in a rapid production capability to make the vaccine at scale should it prove safe and effective.
Johnson & Johnson began work on a possible vaccine in January and has now selected a lead candidate vaccine and two backups which will enter early production phases to prepare for the expected overwhelming demand. If early trials validate the company’s vaccine, the company would need an emergency use authorization from the FDA to begin providing the vaccine. Read more at Johnson & Johnson.
Jerusalem, March 31st, 2020 - United Hatzalah initiated a campaign aimed at explaining to the Charedi communities around Israel the importance of adhering to Health Ministry Regulations when it comes to Covid-19 Coronavirus. The campaign consists of tens of thousands of pashkvillim being posted in Charedi cities and communities, recorded phone calls targeting some 500,000 Charedim who do not use smartphones and have no access to the internet, and cars with loudspeakers traveling around Charedi neighborhoods, all of which told Charedim to stay inside their homes.
The targeted campaign, that began on Monday and will continue for the coming weeks leading up to Pesach, outlined the dangers of gathering together in groups, including prayer groups (minyanim) and detailing how group ...
There has been a consistent decline in the rate of coronavirus infections in Israel since last week, with infections now doubling at a rate of once every eight days compared to once every three.
Professor Gabi Barabash, former director of the Israeli Health Ministry and of the Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, told Channel 12 News that as this decline has been observed over a three-day period, it could, hopefully, indicate a trend.
“If the numbers continue looking like this, they [the government] could reconsider the lockdown after Passover,” he said.
As of Tuesday morning, there were 4,831 confirmed coronavirus cases in Israel. Eighty-three patients are in serious condition and 66 of them are in need of respiratory support. 17 people have died, and 163 have made a full reco...
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday was repeatedly questioned by his brother, CNN’s Chris Cuomo, about whether the governor was thinking about, had ever thought about or might ever think about running for president.
During an interview on “Cuomo Prime Time,” the two brothers spoke about the governor’s political ambitions, as well as New York’s efforts to battle the spread of coronavirus, on which Andrew Cuomo has taken to giving daily news briefings.
“With all of this adulation you’re getting for doing job, are you thinking about running for president?” Cuomo asked his brother.
“No, no,” the governor responded curtly.
cuomo from BaltimoreJewishLife.com on Vimeo.
Read more at The Hill.
Life under coronavirus means staying at home as much as possible — but you’ll likely need to make a trip to the grocery store or pharmacy at some point. Download or print this tip sheet to make sure you don’t bring the virus back home with you.
Note: Recommendations for Covid-19 may change as officials learn more, so monitor your local health department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for updates.
Make a game plan
Designate one person to be your errand-runner to limit your outside exposures
Set up a disinfecting station — an area outside your home or in a room with low foot traffic where you can disinfect packaged food
When you’re out
Avoid coming within less than six feet of others
Wipe handles o...
Baltimore, MD - Mar. 30, 2020 - Chazal (Berachos 6a) tell us that if we are not able to perform a mitzvah, but we truly desire to perform it, it is considered as if we actually performed it.
Chazal (Megillah 31b) also say that if we are unable to bring a korban, reciting and studying korbanos is considered as if we brought a korban.
Sefer Derech Pikudecha (Hakdamah 5), by the author of the Bnei Yissaschar, writes that if we try our best to study about any mitzvah and think about our desire to keep the mitzvah if we were able to, it is considered as if we actually fulfilled it.
With this background, we present the following tefilos found in the reputable siddur of the Vilna Gaon, Ishei Yisrael. These tefilos are based on the Sefer Rokei'ach (as stated in the notes at the...
Although it is always the halacha, we must especially keep the law of the land during this time of national crisis. In the Talmud it is called, “Dina D’Malchusa Dina.” This video explains it more fully.
The U.S. hit a grim milestone on Monday after health officials announced the 3,000th coronavirus-related death in the country, with about 900 from New York City alone, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
New York is currently the U.S. epicenter of the virus, with over 67,000 cases. Over a third of all deaths in the country have occurred in New York and 75 percent of all Americans have been told to stay home as much as possible.
USNS Comfort, a Navy hospital ship with 1,000 beds and 12 operating rooms, arrived in New York harbor earlier in the day, which could be ready to take in patients as soon as Tuesday amid a growing strain on healthcare workers in the city.
New York’s Empire State Building was lit up on Monday night and will stay up throu...
Two “quarantine hotels” are being prepared to house charedi coronavirus patients in Israel beginning on Tuesday, Hebrew media reported on Monday.
The hotels, which according to Channel 12 will be located in Bnei Brak and Beit Shemesh, will be separated by gender and serve food with strict kosher supervision to fit the needs of the frum community. Two more hotels are being prepared to open in the future, according to the report.
The announcement follows Hebrew media reports on Sunday that despite representing just 10 percent of Israel’s population, charedim make up half of all Israelis being treated in hospitals for coronavirus.
While Israel’s Arab-Israeli and ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods tend to be overcrowded, police have also cited difficulty in enforcing socia...
Jack Ma, the founder and former chairman of Alibaba Group Holding, through the Alibaba Foundation and Jack Ma Foundation has donated medical supplies to Israel to help fight the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, the foundations announced Sunday. The supplies include Covid-19 test kits, face masks, face shields, and protective clothing.
The two cargo flights loaded with the medical supplies departed from Shanghai and arrived in Tel Aviv Sunday.
The foundations have also donated medical supplies and testing kits to 24 Latin American countries including Argentina, Brazil, and Chile, testing kits and masks to 54 countries throughout Africa, and 800 ventilators to different countries in Europe.
Ma has visited Israel twice, both times in 2018, during which he met with Prime Minister Benjamin N...
The young woman is charged with spying, taking military photographs, for Hezbollah terrorist group.
A 25-year-old as-yet-unnamed Israeli woman has been accused of spying for the Lebanese Shiite-Islamist terrorist group, Hezbollah.
The Central District Attorney’s Office cleared some of the details of the case for publication Monday. According to a report on Israeli news site Arutz 7, the court in the central city of Lod, charged the Israeli female civilian with “contact with a foreign agent, handing information to an enemy with the intent to harm the State of Israel’s security, and providing a service to a terrorist organization.”
Read more at i24NEWS.
Forty-five percent of Americans say they have a favorable view of how New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) is responding to the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new Harvard CAPS/Harris poll released exclusively to The Hill.
The same survey showed President Trump’s approval rating at 48 percent, while 50 percent said they approved of his handling of the crisis.
The new figures come as Cuomo’s daily press briefings have become must-see television across the country as the number of COVID-19 cases in New York City skyrockets.
Read more at The Hill.
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Letter from the Vaad HaRabbanim of Baltimore regarding COVID-19
Baltimore, MD - Mar. 29, 2020 - We are living through unprecedented times. Due to the impact of the Coronavirus, members of your community, many of whom have always been on the giving side, find themselves having to ask for help. Please help Ahavas Yisrael to do what it always does: be there for your friends and neighbors and provide for them in this desperate time with sensitivity and discretion.
Every dollar that you generously give, will help local families to stay in their homes, have food for Yom Tov and maintain a semblance of normalcy. While we are socially distanced, lets keep our hearts where they belong: close to one another. Start by donating today.
This article is adapted from my sefer, What Can I Say… Today?” on the laws of Loshon Hora in contemporary times. All halachos mentioned herein are complex and part of a larger framework. The purpose of the article is to raise awareness of these essential halachos. Hence, one should not draw any practical conclusions without first consulting a rav.
The prohibition of Loshon Hora is not limited to speech. Thus, the prohibition also applies if the information is conveyed through writing or any other form of communication.
Hinting or Alluding
Furthermore, one transgresses the prohibition of Loshon Hora by merely hinting to the Loshon Hora, even though he did not explicitly say anything negative. Similarly, it is forbidden to relate anything about an ind...