Israel’s corona hotel in Tel Aviv receives its first guests

The Dan Panorama received its first 10 coronavirus cases upon opening as one of four hotels serving as isolation centers in Israel.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

The Dan Panorama hotel already received its first 10 guests Tuesday evening, Israel Hayom reported.

Dan Panoroma opened in Tel Aviv as one of four hotels in the country that will act as quarantine spaces for those who have light symptoms of coronavirus.

Taking no chances, Magen David Adom brought them by ambulance, and they walked through isolated and sterilized hallways to get to their rooms. Each was supplied with a kit from his or her health provider that will allow the medical staff to keep a remote eye on their condition.

The hotel can take in 500 patients, with the possibility of extending that number to 1,500 if need be, said the report.

While visiting the convalescent hotels Tuesday, Defense Minister Naftali Bennett explained their two-fold purpose.

“We have a huge goal that as many [virus] carriers as possible get here. These hotels will be a pleasant island of tranquility, a home to the light corona carriers in the months ahead,” Bennett said.

“The national goal is to suppress the jump [of cases] so that we don’t get to the situation in Italy where hospitals are collapsing under the load, that a doctor in a hospital has to decide who dies and who lives, the grandfather or the father. We don’t want to get to that point. The big goal is to locate the carriers and isolate them from the population,” he said.

The paper reported that ironically, there was a crush of reporters and defense ministry personnel at the entrance to the press conference at which Bennett spoke of the importance of isolation.

Dozens were crowded together, in complete violation of the Health Ministry guidelines that people should stand some two meters apart when together.

Nobody’s temperature was taken ahead of time, which aroused concern that if any of those present gets sick in the coming days, everyone who attended would have to go into quarantine themselves for the next 14 days.

Being turned into convalescent homes may be a mixed blessing for these hotels. They could get to full occupancy at a time when Hebrew media are reporting that some 200 guesthouses throughout the country have closed or are in the process of closing due to the bans ordered by health authorities in an attempt to mitigate the spread of the pandemic.

On the other hand, nobody wants to see the numbers of victims rise – even those who are only slightly ill.