African leaders with expertise in AIDS research, prevention, and treatment from Botswana, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, and Kenya toured the Hadassah Medical Center during a week-long seminar in Israel, focused on the exchange of information and ideas between Israeli and African universities and hospitals.

The seminar, sponsored by the American Jewish Committee’s Project Interchange, the Israeli AIDS Consortium in Africa, and MASHAV–The Israel Center for International Cooperation, aims to expand Israeli and African medical interaction and highlight Israel’s medical knowledge in the field of HIV/AIDS, in particular and global public health issues, in general.

Founded in 1982, Project Interchange, an educational institute of the American Jewish Committee, has brought over 5,000 leaders from more than 60 countries to Israel, offering them broad exposure to the complex issues facing Israel and the region. The Israeli AIDS Consortium in Africa was founded in 2005 by Prof. Shlomo Maayan, head of Hadassah’s AIDS Center; Prof. Dan Engelhard, head of the Department of Pediatrics at Hadassah Hospital-Ein Kerem; Dr. Dan Turner, head of the AIDS Center at Sourasky Medical Center in Tel Aviv; and Prof. Zehava Grossman, head of the AIDS laboratory at Sheva Hospital. Its goal is to help African universities, research institutes, and government agencies combat AIDS and raise awareness about other medical concerns. The Consortium’s main activity is training and mentoring African medical personnel in AIDS prevention, treatment, and clinical research.

MASHAV, a project of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was launched in 1958 with the aim of sharing with the rest of the developing world the know-how and technologies which provided the basis for Israel’s own rapid development.