Palestine as a country with a naturally healthy climate was pictured by Dr. J. J. Golub, who returned on the Paris from a survey of the Holy Land for Hadassah, women’s Zionist organization.
Speaking quietly and with great conviction, Dr. Golub expressed enthusiasm about the medical work Hadassah is doing in Palestine.
“The Hadassah hospitals,” he said, “set the standard for medical institutions. Even the Palestine government hospitals do not rate as high as the Hadassah’s.”
In company with Dr. Nathan Ratnoff, president of the American Jewish Physicians Committee, Dr. Leo I. Mishkin, and a number of Palestinian doctors, Dr. Golub toured the Holy Land, seeking a site for the proposed Hadassah hospital which will be adjunct to the Hebrew University.
“We chose Mount Scopus as the site,” he said, “because of its proximity to the university and because of its healthful climate. It is 2,500 feet above sea level, has dry air, and is inland.”
MALARIA MOST DREADED.
“I don’t want to tell you too much about our report,” he continued, “because Dr. Ratnoff, who really headed the group of physicians and did a great deal of the work, is returning, on the Ile de France next week and he will have more to say.”
Discussing medical conditions in general, Dr. Golub said that malaria is still the most dreaded disease in Palestine, but that it is now on the wane. “For months there was danger of an alarming epidemic, he said, “but that has subsided.”
“It is interesting to note that many of the twelve- to thirteen-thousand immigrants from Germany become ill with mild diseases for the first few months until they become acclimatized. The sudden change of climate results in mild cases of sand fever and, in some cases dysentery. Hadassah is taking care of this, however, providing extra beds in its hospitals. After the immigrants become accustomed to the warm climate, they react better.”
“The Palestinian children are generally in excellent health. They are very well nourished.”
The conversation drifted back to disease. “Trachoma is on the decrease,” Dr. Golub said, “because of the preventive steps of Hadassah and other medical organizations. Other diseases in Palestine are pneumonia, scarlet fever and the other medical diseases which are found all over the world. There is no smallpox.
WATER PRESSING PROBLEM
“Then there are, of course, the surgical diseases which are prevalent among Jews the world over.” Dr. Golub emphasized that while these diseases exist, sickness as a whole is decreasing in Palestine.
“Palestine is a fine, healthy country,” he repeatedly asserted.
“Housing conditions have been tremendously improved, which immediately has a favorable effect on tuberculosis. However, the number of beds for T.B. patients is still insufficient. Hadassah is installing about fifty or sixty more beds, but still more are needed.
“The big problem of Palestine health,” Dr. Golub declared, “is water. Especially is this problem pressing in the larger cities. The government is now constructing a large water main to Jerusalem, and it is expected that that city will soon have sufficient water.”
“Whatever disease there is in Palestine,” he emphasized, “is due to primitive preventive methods. In any climate, with any conditions there will be disease where preventive steps are not taken. But the government and Hadassah are educating the inhabitants in disease prevention, and the outlook for health in Palestine is very encouraging.”
PALESTINE’S PROSPERITY EXAMPLE TO U. S.
“What Palestine has experienced during the last ten years may well serve, in my opinion, as an illustration of a method by which prosperity may be obtained in the United States,” stated Rabbi Herbert S. Goldstein of the Institutional Synagogue, returning from a trip to Palestine and Europe aboard the Paris.
“About ten years ago,” he said, “I visited Palestine and found unemployment rampant throughout the country. Prosperity came to the land as soon as immigrants entered in large numbers, which automatically resulted in the utilization of much capital.”
Dr. Goldstein said he was shocked to find that the Jews of Germany are “not only suffering economic discriminations, but that they are living in a constant fear of bodily harm.”
“In Europe,” he said, “I found in the press and in the minds of the people with whom I came in contact a fear of war like an impending cloud. The Swiss are particularly in dread of being invaded by Germany as Belgium was in 1914.”
Rabbi Goldstein visited the Harry Fischel Foundation for Research in Talmud. “I should like to see more institutions of such a nature created in Palestine so that the spiritual development in the Holy Land may keep pace with the economic development,” he said.