NEW YORK (Aug. 21)
A number of new Hadassah projects in Israel were reported on today during the second day of Hadassah’s 58th annual National Convention being held here through Wednesday. Among the new projects are a vocational guidance institute for immigrant students, a diagnosis and treatment center for overseas patients, and a “tranquility machine” for headaches and tension treatment.
Mrs. Edward H. Lewis, chairman of the Hadassah Israel Education Services, reported to the 3500 delegates on the “academic shock” suffered by Russian students who have recently arrived in Israel. “It is extremely difficult for a bright student from Moscow or Kiev who believes that he can become a doctor or a scientist to find that he is below the standard required by Israeli universities,” she said. “Nor is it easy for any advisor to get him to lower his sights and to choose a less demanding profession or occupation.”
As a result, the Hadassah Vocational Guidance Institute has set up a pilot project with the Ministry of Absorption at the preparatory courses of the Hebrew University and the University of the Negev, according to Mrs. Lewis. The project proved so successful that all immigrant students will be sent to this guidance program in the coming year, she said.
Mrs. Lewis explained that standards of education at the completion of high school in countries of immigration, such as the USSR, are lower than those required in Israel. In the USSR high school includes only 10 years, compared to Israel’s 12. The policy of the Israeli government is to provide the immigrant students with material help, but not to give them any preference in the form of accepting them for courses until they are qualified, Mrs. Lewis said. This policy is seldom understood by the students before they come to Israel, according to her.
Mrs. Charlotte Jacobson, Hadassah Medical Organization chairman, announced that Hadassah is planning to build a special guest house for overseas patients and their families on the medical center campus at Ein Karem, Jerusalem. According to her, patients come from Asia and Europe to be treated by the argon laser, from the Eastern Mediterranean for the treatment of rare genetic diseases, and from all over for heart surgery, hemotology and cancer care.
“This does not change our basic philosophy of medical care at Hadassah, where all patients are treated alike,” Mrs. Jacobson said. “This will be a special accommodation for foreign visitors who have requested private facilities.” The guest house will have about 50 rooms.
Dr. Kalman J. Mann, director general of the Hadassah Medical Organization, also announced new strides in the area of teaching. He reported on the creation of a four-year bachelor of science course for nurses training at the Hadassah Henrietta Szold School of Nursing and the further development in the department of internal medicine of a specialty in family medicine for the general practitioner. He also reported that the US Veteran’s Administration has informed the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry that it is now included for the enrollment of eligible veterans under the Veterans’ Readjustment Benefits Act of 1966.
Among the research projects reported on by Dr. Mann, was the work of Dr. David Nelken, head of the immuno-hematology laboratory. Dr. Nelken has isolated a protein named NIP (normal immunosuppressive protein) which is found in the alpha globulin of the blood serum, Dr. Mann said. “This substance suppresses the immunological reaction of the organism and this prevents organ rejection in patients who were hosts to organ transplants,” he explained. The “tranquility machine” was demonstrated to the delegates at the convention. The machine, developed by J. Tannenbaum of the Hadassah electronic department, induces somnolence, tranquility and relaxation in many persons suffering from insomnia, hypertension, allergic asthma, headaches and certain types of migraine, the convention delegates were told.
In recent years, the electro-sleep clinic at the Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center has also functioned as a headache clinic, the main purpose of which is to study the effect of electrical current treatment in three different types of headaches: tension, migraine and post-traumatic, speakers told the convention. The new machine is based on the “gate theory of pain,” advanced by Dr. Patrick Wall, who recently visited Israel.
Experiments in inducing sleep were first conducted at the Hadassah Medical Center on dogs and then on volunteers, speakers said. Since then, studies on the effect of the electro-sleep therapy on psychiatric patients suffering from severe insomnia have shown that its effect is of a general sedative nature, with restoration of normal sleep rhythm in a high percentage of the patients, according to convention speakers.