From the President

Two items in this edition of the Hadassah Newsletter brought home to me, once again, why Hadassah in Jerusalem is more than a hospital.

The story about the Hadassah Technology Accelerator and the update about the new Rehabilitation Center at the hospital’s Mount Scopus campus exemplify, yet again, the key role Hadassah plays – not only in Jerusalem but in Israel.

In 1912, the visionary American Zionist leader Henrietta Szold landed in Israel. Her mission was to assess what could be done to improve conditions for the residents of Ottoman Palestine. Returning to her home in New York, Henrietta established the Hadassah Women’s Zionist Organisation of America (HWZOA). Its task was to deliver better health outcomes for the people in the region starting with the health of women and children, which were at significant risk.

By 1948, Hadassah had established a network of hospitals and clinics throughout then mandated British Palestine. Shortly after the establishment of the State of Israel on 14 May, 1948, HWZOA handed over the ’keys’ of all their clinics and hospitals (bar the Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem) to the new government. Was there ever a more powerful statement of commitment to the community than this single gesture? I doubt it.

Fast forward more than seventy years and Hadassah’s impact in the community, local and national, continues to be felt on many fronts.

Nothing could demonstrate this more than the decision of Hadassah to address a pressing demand for a world-class rehabilitation centre in Jerusalem; a city of 820,000 residents with more than its fair share of patients in need of critical and acute rehabilitation care – wounded soldiers, terror victims, stroke patients, motor vehicle accident victims and geriatric patients recovering from major injury following falls.

Current progress of the new Rehabilitation Center construction site

Within three years Jerusalem residents will have access to a state of the art rehabilitation facility at Mount Scopus. This first of its kind in the city is a joint initiative of Hadassah and the Government of Israel and we are proud to be an active partner in the fundraising for this unique facility.

But it doesn’t end there.

From its earliest days, Hadassah committed itself to best practice in patient care. Doctors and staff were encouraged to actively pursue better treatment outcomes. Research and innovation were encouraged and as a result, Hadassah is blessed with a large cohort of PhDs among its medical staff whose research is world-renowned. A second article in this newsletter highlights the establishment of a bio-tech ‘accelerator’ in the heart of Hadassah’s Ein Kerem campus.

This world’s first hospital-based start-up accelerator operated in partnership with IBM is a six-month program that aims to help start-ups develop technologies for the global medical market. It is easy to understand why Hadassah was such a perfect fit for this initiative, given that more than 50% of all hospital-based research in Israel is conducted here.

Over more than a century, Hadassah Hospital has been a leader and an innovator, in the most difficult of times and in times of relative calm. Underpinning it all is a belief in the rights of people to access the best health care available, without regard to their religion, politics, gender or any other marker of difference. That has been and will continue to be, Hadassah’s promise to the world.

Ron Finkel AM

President, Hadassah Australia

A Woman of Valour – Dr Dvora Bauman

The shocking reality of sexual abuse and violence in Israel was the theme of Dr Dvora Bauman’s talk to members and friends of Hadassah Australia during her recent visit.

Dr Bauman is Director of Hadassah’s Bat Ami Center for Victims of Violence and Sexual Abuse as well as a senior obstetrician-gynaecologist at Hadassah Hospital’s Ein Kerem campus. She was in Australia to present at the World Congress of Paediatric and Adolescent Gynaecology. 

Read More.

L-R: Debbie Strauch, Eva Rutman, Leon Strauch, Dr Dvora Bauman, Lynda Brest, Yehudis Krasianski

First for Israel: Hadassah Opens Centre for Cardiogenetics

In tune with the rapidly evolving subspecialty of cardiogenetics through which cardiac specialists can identify the genetic basis for many heart problems, the Hadassah Medical Center’s Irma and Paul Milstein Heart Center has opened Israel’s first Center for Cardiogenetics.

Advances in genome sequencing and molecular biology have enabled physicians to determine the genetic basis of cardiomyopathies (diseases of the heart muscle), channelopathies (genetic abnormalities in heart cell proteins that control heart electrical activity and thus can cause heart rhythm disturbances, known as arrhythmias), lipid disorders, and vascular diseases. In addition, genetic diagnosis is now more accessible, and the findings can be interpreted in a clinically meaningful way. 

Read More.

Prof. Chaim Lotan, left, Howard Milstein, and President of Hadassah, the Women's Organization Ellen Hershkin 

Hadassah International Raises $9 Million at a Miami Fundraising Event

MIAMI, FL, December 4, 2019 – Hadassah International brought together donors and supporters from three continents to an electrifying evening which raised $9M in donations for Hadassah Medical Organization’s two world-class research hospitals in Jerusalem. The gala, held on December 2nd in the spectacular Miami residence of Joey and Lindsay Schottenstein, was Hadassah International’s first fundraising event in Miami. 

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Donors and supporters attended the gala to support the building of a new Rehabilitation Center at Hadassah Mount Scopus

Meet the man inspiring Israel’s Ethiopian community

Much has been written about the innovative program at Hadassah Hospital to assist Ethiopian-Israelis achieve their dream of a career in nursing. Less is known about the man whose vision and dedication helped to create the program that is empowering an under-privileged community in Israel.

His name is Rav Yosef Zvi Rimon. 

Read More.

From left: Gilad Cohen, Hadassah Australia Development Director Eric Cheng, Rabbi Yosef Rimon, Hadassah Australia Executive Director Ruth Rosen

A better life for young Ethiopian-Israelis

The Ethiopian community in Israel is unique in a number of respects, but one that stands out is how it held fast to its Jewish beliefs despite being isolated from the mainstream Jewish world for millennia.

Having come to Israel in the 1980s and 90s, many of its dreams remain unfulfilled. That’s where the worldwide Hadassah community has taken charge. We made it our mission to help young Ethiopians better integrate into Israeli society through the medium of health.

It begs the questions: What makes the Hadassah Ethiopian Nursing Scholarship program so invaluable? Why are we committed to raising significant funds to support the campaign? 

Read More.

A Snapshot of a Remarkable Year of Achievement

We have been busy in 2019! Here are just some of the activities we have been involved with. Some of the highlights include:

  • The turning of the sod for the new Jerusalem Rehabilitation Center.
  • Dr Dafna Idan and Dr Maya Yaari completed their fellowships at the Royal Children’s Hospital’s Centre for Community and Child Health.
  • the establishment of the HAMRC – Hadassah Australia Medical Research & Collaborations Foundation – as a full DGR-1 health promotion charity.
  • The opening of the new Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplantation Unit at Hadassah Ein Kerem.

Read More.

Starlight Captains with Ron Finkel and Ruth Rosen at Monash Children's Hospital

Hadassah Hospital and IBM accelerate medical start-ups

The first ‘graduates’ have emerged from a medical accelerator based at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem.

Funded by IBM’s Israel accelerator, IBM Alpha Zone, and supported by the Jerusalem Development Authority, this unique, exciting and transformative project consists of a six months’ program for seed and early-stage medical/technological start-ups, and offers participating companies access to Hadassah’s clinical and research resources, free office space, mentorship and guidance. 

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Tamar Raz, CEO of the Hadasit Medical Research Services and Development

First-Ever Magen David Adom Dispatch Center Dedicated at Hadassah

An historic arrangement has been made between Magen David Adom and Hadassah Hospital. A 24-hour Emergency Ambulance Dispatch Center is now based at the Ein Kerem campus. It is reducing waiting times for people living in the vicinity. 

Read More.

Second International Conference on Trauma and Mental Health

You're invited to explore the key issues faced by psychologists, psychiatrists, GPs, social workers, counsellors and others dealing with patients or clients affected by adversity and trauma.​

Learn the latest techniques and methodologies that are being applied in the real world to help support the mental health and well-being of both children and adults. Discover the consequences of living in long-term trauma and conflict, and the progress being made in the prevention and intervention in mental health consequences of trauma.

Learn More.

On behalf of President, Ron Finkel AM, the Board and Staff of Hadassah Australia and Hadassah Australia Medical Research & Collaborations Foundation (HAMRC), we wish you, your family and friends a Happy Chanukah, a merry Christmas and a safe and healthy festive season.

May your home be filled with light, health and peace. Without your passionate and considered support, we could not have reached the heights that we did in 2019. Thank you!

We look forward to re-engaging with you in 2020.