Survivors of music festival massacre committed to psychiatric hospitals

Israeli official reveals that a number of the survivors from the Hamas massacre of some 260 party-goers in southern Israel have been hospitalized after suffering mental breakdowns.

By Susan Tawil, World Israel News

A number of survivors from the horrific Hamas massacre of party-goers at the Supernova music festival near Re’im in southern Israel last month have been committed to psychiatric treatment, a senior Israeli official revealed this week.

More than ten survivors of the Hamas massacre have been forcibly hospitalized in psychiatric hospitals. They witnessed about 260 fellow concert-goers raped, tortured, mutilated, and slaughtered by the terrorists who invaded the event.

Daniel Raz, Israel’s National Commissioner for Involuntary Hospitalization, explained the matter to a special Health Committee session at the Knesset on Monday.

“The festival attendees were in very difficult mental states,” he said. “The survivors went into a turbulent mental state in light of the difficult experiences they went through, and dealing with the unbearable loss.”

The Health Committee presented a report to Knesset stating that the mental health system in Israel was already overburdened, previous to the current conflict.

The report detailed a mental health system suffering from “a significantly lacking budget, a lack of personnel, long waiting times for psychotherapeutic or psychiatric treatment, and poor infrastructure in mental health hospitals.”

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Israel, which has socialized medicine, has four main HMOs which have all been offering members three free online or phone therapy sessions since the outbreak of the war.

The organizations have been inundated with over 6,000 calls for the sessions this month. They hope the program will “help prevent the patients’ mental health from worsening.”

Many volunteer mental health providers (social workers, psychotherapists, etc.) throughout Israel have pitched in to help their fellow Israelis cope with the stressful situation.

They man hot-lines, give lectures on coping skills, and offer free counselling.

According to NATAL, the non-profit Israel Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War, some 15,000 calls for help were placed this past month, as opposed to a typical volume of 1,200.

Israeli Health Ministry Director-General Moshe Bar Siman Tov said that he expects a further increase in the demand for mental health care and assistance as the war and the hostage crisis continue.