"More Than Masks” allows patients to see the health professional’s smile!
Founded by medical student in the Sackler School of Medicine Israeli 4-Year Program, Nisim Asayg
Nisim came across a fellow doctors' Facebook post expressing how frustrated she felt wearing protective suits that leave only her eyes visible to her patients, disturbing the human connection between the medical staff and their patients. The patients on the other hand, felt extremely lonely and isolated. In order to reduce this isolation, Nisim initiated printing stickers with the staff members' faces and placing them on their chest or back. A smiling picture of the doctor or nurse makes a big difference since it reduces the physical and emotional distance that is forced onto the patients. This way the patients can recognize the medical staff members and the staff members can recognize one another.
This project was based on the principles that Nisim acquired at the Sackler School of Medicine- Empathy, a smile and humanity are an inseparable part of medical treatment.
Soon after reading the Facebook post, Anat Skliar (an MD-MPH student from the Israeli 4-Year Program, and Dr. Lior Rozental (a faculty alumni and a medical education staff member; beginning a tenure-track academic position in July 2020) have joined the project.
More than Masks included the recruitment and management of dozens of volunteers, assisting in graphic designing, printing and distribution of the stickers. This project is a voluntary nonprofit venture and was funded by donations that the group has gathered. After several weeks of intensive work, they have printed over 220,000 stickers, for 42 wards in 16 hospital and additional medical centers (for over 2,100 medical staff members). Next, they have created an online portal, in cooperation with HP Indigo, to which every medical staff member may upload their photo and obtain a sticker. The word about the project spread quickly on social media and news, such as- Kan11 news and the Israel Hayom newspaper.
Hospitals and organizations that took part in this project: Sheba Medical Center, Sourasky TA-Medical Center, Wolfson, Shamir Medical Center, Schneider, Meir, Rabin Medical Center, Assuta Ashdod, Shaare Zedek, Hadassah Ein Kerem, Rambam, Bnei Zion, Linado, Shalva, Poria, Hillel Yaffe, Aleh Negev Center , Eitanim nursing home and HMOs Meuhedet and Maccabi.