151. Anything that would lead to a need to contravene Sabbath laws may not be done to a patient from Wednesday onwards. Thus the patient should ask for an elective operation to be scheduled, where possible, at the beginning of the week. However if the surgeon's operating day is during the second half of the week, the patient may have the operation on that day[235]. If an elective operation was carried out before the Sabbath when it could have been scheduled for the beginning of the week, the Sabbath must still be set aside, as necessary, for the seriously ill patient[236]. It may possibly even be permitted to prepare a non-seriously ill patient on the Sabbath for surgery scheduled for immediately after the Sabbath, if the preparation only involves Rabbinical prohibitions (for example an enema) and if the operation cannot be postponed to a day later in the week[237]. Similarly, such a patient may fast on the Sabbath in preparation for this surgery, if it cannot be postponed[238].

152. Before the Sabbath, one must make whatever preparations possible in order to avoid unnecessarily contravening Sabbath laws even for a seriously ill patient and it is forbidden to rely on the fact that should the need arise, Sabbath laws may be set aside notwithstanding[239].


[235] R. Sh.Z. Auerbach in Shemirat Shabbat Kehilchata 32, note 97.

[236] Shemirat Shabbat Kehilchata 32:33.

[237] Written communication from R. Y.Y. Neuwirth. See Shemirat Shabbat Kehilchata 40:38.

[238] Oral communication from R. Y.Y.Neuwirth.

[239] Shemirat Shabbat Kehilchata 40:34.