During the height of the COVID pandemic, Hadassah International reached out to the Chilean Jewish Community to offer help and advice from the Hadassah Medical Organization (HMO). The relationship with Hadassah was welcomed with open arms. Conversations were held with Fanny Ribak, Hadassah International director of development for South America, about forming a Hadassah International Unit in Chile.
For a fully functioning new Hadassah International unit to be created, a cadre of volunteers would be necessary to raise funds for the Hadassah Hospitals, and cooperative partnerships between the medical establishment in Chile and HMO would have to be established.
Hadassah Chile Board of Directors:
After several months of work, the Hadassah Chile board of directors has been formed. We are very proud of the team and firmly believe that they will be very successful.
The Board is led by Abel Lipszyc, now President of Hadassah Chile, accompanied by Arie Roizman, Perla Calderon, Daniel Rappoport, Dalia Rezepka, Alberto Rubinstein, and Gerardo Gorodischer.
Various avenues for medical collaborations are being explored:
In the coming months, Hadassah Chile will begin to work together with the University of Chile and the Hospital Clínico Universidad de Chile to facilitate the development and technology transfer of the digital medicine platform developed at Hadassah Medical Center. This will allow the most isolated populations of the Chilean territory to have greater access to medical consultation and remote diagnosis from specialists.
Concepcion is the second most important region in Chile and has very good economic resources and a community very involved in health projects. During meetings with authorities from the Hospital Concepcion (facilitated by Arie Roizman, a member of the Hadassah Chile Board), it appears that this hospital is also interested in working with Hadassah.
Hospital Concepcion would like to collaborate with HMO in the area of hospital management and administration, investment design, growth, and efficiency. They are interested in having management travel to HMO, and Hadassah International would arrange for them to have meetings in Jerusalem that would focus on their areas of interest.
Dr. Paula Daza was the Chilean minister of Health during COVID. During meetings with Jorge Diener, executive director of Hadassah International, Dr. Daza expressed interest in Hadassah’s prevention programs for both diabetes and heart disease in women. The Public Policy Center of the Universidad del Desarrollo directed by Dr. Daza, would need to evaluate the programs and the necessary resources to carry out a pilot program in Chile.
Potential opportunities with other hospitals in Chile are also being investigated.
Webinars with the Clinical Hospital of the University of Chile have also taken place:
- Dr. Rifaat Safadi, Head of the Department of Gastroenterology at HMO, presented a webinar on new advances in Gastroenterological research and new treatments carried out at Hadassah at the weekly meeting of the gastroenterology service of the Clinical Hospital of the University of Chile. It was attended by 30 Chilean specialists who are part of the department. Hadassah thanked Dr. Jaime Poniachik for facilitating this meeting.
- Dr. Michal Lotem, Head of the Hadassah Cancer Research Center and Center for Melanoma and Cancer Immunotherapy presented a Webinar about new advances and treatments in Immunotherapy and Melanoma. This meeting was held virtually within the framework of the weekly clinical meeting of the dermatology team of the Clinical Hospital of the University of Chile, and more than 25 medical specialists participated. This webinar was possible thanks to Dr. Perla Calderon, dermatologist, and member of the Board of Hadassah Chile.
A special event was held at the house of Sima Rezepka for those interested in the work of Hadassah International. Sima is very active in the Jewish Community and has served on the board of several Jewish charitable organizations.
Jorge Diener engaged the audience with a presentation about Hadassah International, our projects, the humanitarian mission in Poland, and opportunities and challenges for Hadassah in Chile.