JERUSALEM (Aug. 23)
Helena Kagan, veteran Israeli pediatrician and medical pioneer, died Monday at the age of 88. Born in Tashkent, Kagan studied in Switzerland and graduated as a physician from Berne University in 1910.
She arrived in Palestine on the eve of World War I and abandoned her scientific studies to educate mothers in basic hygiene and child care. She later became the head of Hadassah Hospital’s pediatrics department and was the founder and first chairman of the Israel Pediatrics Association.
Kagan was a member of the Yishuv’s electoral assembly and the pre-State Vaad Leumi where she served as advisor on medical services. She was also a member of the WIZO Executive and was instrumental in building the Jerusalem WIZO babies’ home. She received the Israel Prize in 1965 for her “special contribution to the welfare of the state and society.”