Newsletter #47
May 2016

Special APF-Sponsored Speaking Tour:
Israeli Doctor Who Provides Aid to Syrian War Victims
Dr. Salman Zarka, a retired IDF Colonel and the director general of Ziv Medical Center in Zefat in northern Israel, is on a mission. He wants the world to know that his hospital is providing medical and humanitarian care to victims of the Syrian civil war.

The fact that Syria has been Israel's sworn enemy for many years hasn't deterred Israel from caring for more than 2,000 wounded and sick Syrians since 2013.

Impressed by this work, APF invited Dr. Zarka to come speak in the U.S. This spring, on an APF-facilitated tour, he spoke at seven venues: in New York and Atlanta, plus two locations in Washington, DC, and three in Florida. It was heartening to hear him talk about how Israel is providing exactly the same high standard of care to Syrians that Israeli citizens receive.
Attendees were moved to tears as Dr. Zarka shared stories of horrifically maimed Syrian children who appear alone at the Israeli border, and of wounded Syrians who arrive at the Israeli army post, dragged there on mattresses by relatives desperate to save their lives. One particularly riveting story involved a 15-year-old girl, pregnant with twins, who showed up at the border. Hospital staffers performed an emergency Caesarean and were able to save all three lives.

Another situation that's encountered all too frequently are patients with severe wounds to their limbs. It's standard operating procedure in global war situations to amputate a damaged limb to save a patient's life: This relatively straightforward procedure requires one operation and two or three days of hospitalization. By contrast, Israeli medical care seeks to save limbs whenever possible. Doing so requires multiple operations and a much longer post-operative recovery (and is considerably more costly). But as a result of this superior Israeli care, many wounded Syrians return home with their maimed limbs healed and intact, often accompanied by expensive rehabilitation equipment that the hospital staff knows they will never see again.

There are countless stories like this, and many are almost too painful to listen to. Perhaps the most amazing thing is that all those treatments, some spanning months, are offered for free, and subsidized by the hospitals themselves, which receive insufficient support from the Israeli government.

If you feel moved to contribute to Ziv Medical Center, you can do so through our website or by mail. We will forward your contributions, along with our shared gratitude, to the hospital. It is just one more way we continue supporting healthcare in Israel.

Special thanks:
APF is deeply grateful to all the volunteers at the Friends of Ziv Medical Center community for their hard work in making Dr. Zarka's Florida engagements a reality. We would also like to extend our warm gratitude to Temple Beth Torah in Aventura, FL, and Temple Beth-Am in Jupiter, FL, which hosted public gatherings. A special thank-you goes out to APF board member, Richard Klitzberg, who organized the event at his community in Boca Raton. We also wish to thank the entire team at the Israeli Consulate in Atlanta for their warm Southern hospitality as well as the Atlanta AJC for organizing the event. Special thanks to Dr. Eddie Greenberg and his wife, Galia, for hosting an event with Dr. Zarka at their home.

Many thanks to the Israeli Embassy in Washington, DC, and especially to the Israel Deputy Chief of Mission Reuven Azar for hosting special event at his home in Maryland. Many thanks to Alliance Bernstein in NYC and especially to Mrs. Kim Isaacs Katz for hosting a wonderful event at the 40th floor overlooking Central Park. Dr. Zarka was touched by the warm hospitality he received everywhere we traveled.


Dr. Yehuda Schwarz, APF Fellow: A True Pediatric Specialist
Dr. Yehuda Schwarz and his family
The ear houses the smallest bones in the body. Imagine operating on those of a child, under a microscope, in that tiny complicated space.

Dr. Yehuda Schwarz, soon-to-be an APF 2016-2017 Clinical Fellow in pediatric ear, nose and throat (ENT) and head and neck surgery at Montreal Children's Hospital, loves the precision work of pediatric ENT surgery and loves working with kids. He is now a general ENT and head and neck surgeon. After his Fellowship he will have earned the right to call himself a true pediatric specialist.

"I like the ear a lot and I've done a lot of research on it. (In fact, right now he's completing a two-year-Montreal Children's research fellowship investigating, among other areas, newborn hearing tests.)

"This surgery is very delicate and very complicated. And I like that."
Registration for the Course Is Open: Join Us in Israel!

The APF's 18th Annual Emergency and Disaster Preparedness Course in Israel will be held November 12-17, 2016.
Click here to view the course brochure Please complete the 2016 Course Registration Form and return it to APF along with your deposit to reserve your spot today!

For additional information, please contact APF office. 
For more information click here 
or contact Beth with Allergists For Israel: [email protected]
American Physicians Fellowship for Medicine in Israel