Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Health Ministry overreaction?

12 March, 2020

Question:

How can you say that it’s prohibited to immerse when in quarantine? Should Israel’s Ministry of Health’s overreactions get in the way of observing mitzvot?


Answer:

We publicized these guidelines because, from a halachic perspective, it is critical to follow them. Halacha recognizes Israel’s Ministry of Health’s expertise to develop a response to the virus that safeguards public health.

Anyone who is in quarantine is absolutely forbidden to leave their house, except for cases which require medical intervention. Even then, they must notify the medical authorities. Additionally, family members may not come close to them, and certainly any physical and intimate contact is prohibited, even for a couple that is halachically permitted to each other.

Immersion of a potential carrier of the Coronavirus might endanger the health of other women who would immerse in the mikveh, especially those who are at high risk for complications.

For these reasons, it’s critical to follow the instructions of Israel’s Ministry of Health, and not to permit immersion for any woman who is obligated to remain in quarantine.


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