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The National Association of Judaism and Medicine provides a discussion forum for the ever-expanding world of possibilities opened by the advance of medical science in light of the millenniums-old Jewish ethical tradition.

Through conferences, symposia, and the fostering of small-group discussions, the NAJM brings together leaders in the forefront of medical science and Rabbinic scholars of international stature in an effort to advance the understanding of the boundaries and concurrence of ethical and medical systems.

Offering something for scholars, scientists, professionals, as well as lay persons, the NAJM has come to the World Wide Web to open the forum to a wider audience and invite the world to contribute to its growing body of knowledge.

NAJM is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization registered under IRS section 501(c)(3). All contributions made to NAJM are tax deductible.

The National Association of Judaism and Medicine was founded in 1988 at the State University of New York - Downstate Medical Center. The NAJM continues to be sponsored in part by the State University of New York - Downstate Medical Center.

Please note that as of January 2004 we have changed our name from the National Institute of Judaism and Medicine (NIJM) to the National Association of Judaism and Medicine (NAJM).



N.I.J.M. Executive Committee

N.I.J.M. Advisory Board
Moshe Akerman, MD, FACP
Abraham S. Abraham, MD
Yizhak Kupfer, MD
Rabbi Yizchok Breitowitz, JD
Edward Reichman, MD
Rabbi Avrohom Blumenkranz
Hugh Carroll, MD
Philip Felig, MD
Velvel Greene, PhD
Rabbi Mordechai Halperin, MD
Stephan L. Kamholz, MD
Joshua Lederberg, PhD
Jonathan Moreno, PhD
Lawrence M. Resnick, MD
Mark J. Rosen, MD
Rabbi Adin Steinsalz (Even Yisroel)
Rabbi J. Immanuel Schochet, PhD
Alfred Soffer, MD
Louis E. Teichnolz, MD
Rabbi Abraham J. Twerski, MD

A Message from the NAJM Program Director

Michael Moshe Akerman, M.D., Associate Professor of Medicine at the State University of New York Health Science Center at Brooklyn and Director of the N.I.J.M., discusses the intentions and goals of the institute:

Once again this year, we will be bringing together physicians in the forefront of medicine and rabbinic scholars of international stature. Over the years the conferences have had a lasting, positive impact on many health-care professionals, as well as representatives of managed-care groups, other health institutions, and members of the general public who have attended.

The SUNY Health Science Center is to be lauded for its support of this and other cross-cultural conferences, which are needed now as at no other time in history.

Humanity stands at the threshold of a new era. Technological progress in the past century has exceeded the total achieved after many preceding millennia. However, human nature has not changed and human suffering is still with us.

During the summer of 2002, I visited Poland with my parents and an uncle who are survivors of the holocaust. It was an awesome experience to stand at Auschwitz, the site of the world's largest cemetery. (Where more than a million were incinerated) World War II taught us that anything can be rationalized.

This is still true. In 1994 the American Medical Association's weekly newspaper ran an article on cancer pain. The article reported that cancer patients at the Sloan Kettering pain clinic frequently brought up suicide. However, the patients stopped considering suicide when given adequate pain medication.

Americans rationalize physician-assisted suicide by talking about "death with dignity." Euphemisms help make an idea more palatable, but a wise man once said that death with dignity comes through first living life with dignity.

During this years conference we expect to create a dialogue that will foster an appreciation of the boundaries of ethics and science. Past conferences have broached such topics as euthanasia and withdrawing care from terminal patients. This year we move on to the frontiers of stem cell research and triage of medical resources during terrorism and war.

Quantum physics aside, there are some absolutes in ethics and science. Sometimes it just takes looking at dilemmas from a fresh perspective to see through to a solution. It is the hope of this conference's organizers that with each year's outing, we are helping in some way to sharpen our vision and solve the medical, ethical and social dilemmas of our colleagues.


For more info contact us toll free at: 917-760-2770

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