State Launches Probe After Israeli Emergency Crew Fails to Evacuate Ill Actor

State launches probe as author and director Doron Nesher suffered a stroke over the weekend and the Magen David Adom ambulance service would not take him.

The Health Ministry is investigating the circumstances of actor, author and director Doron Nesher's hospitalization, after he suffered a stroke over the weekend and the Magen David Adom ambulance service would not take him.

Nesher, 58, was brought to Meir Hospital in Kfar Sava by his family, who rolled him up in a rug to carry him. He was then moved to Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva and admitted to the neurosurgical intensive care unit in serious condition. His son, Matan, said his condition had improved.

An MDA source said Nesher, of Moshav Sde Warburg, had refused to be taken to the hospital and remained in his bed.

He continued to refuse, even though paramedics called police, a family doctor, the district psychiatrist and an MDA doctor on duty at the MDA hotline in an effort to convince him, the source added. Under the Patients' Rights Act, it is illegal to take someone to a hospital against his will, so the MDA paramedics left.

Matan Nesher welcomed the Health Ministry investigation. "My father couldn't even communicate, so to say that he refused to be taken is impossible. He was totally unaware of what was happening," he said.

"My father is in his condition because of [MDA]," Nesher added. "He could have gotten a clot-busting drug that can only be given within a limited time, and he didn't get it because MDA didn't do its job properly."

The Health Ministry's director general, Prof. Roni Gamzu, said the investigation would be conducted with the help of the ministry's legal adviser and the head of the ministry's medical administration, and would focus on the legal aspects of the incident.

An MDA spokesman said the mobile intensive care unit team worked for two hours to both treat Nesher and convince him to be hospitalized, "but he vehemently refused. It should be stressed that by law it is forbidden for MDA personnel to take a patient to a hospital if he firmly refuses.

"MDA has set up a team to look into the matter, and among other things it will determine whether it's necessary change the law and give MDA personnel the authority to forcibly take someone" to a hospital, the spokesman said.

Nesher, the host of the 1980s children's program "Just Between Us," wrote the script for the film "Late Summer Blues" and also worked as a director. Recently he did spots on Channel 10's morning program.