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NAJM Press Release 4:

For Immediate Release Contact:
Dr. Michael Akerman or Rochelle Silberman - 917-760-2770
October 2002

"Moral challenges and Jewish Ethical Issues in Contemporary Medicine"- SUNY Downstate to Host the Annual International Conference on Judaism and Contemporary Medicine.
by: Dr. Michael Akerman

Brooklyn, NY, October 2002 – Founded in 1988, The International Conference on Judaism and Contemporary Medicine has become known as one of the most intriguing, informative and distinctive conferences that brings together top medical leaders and rabbinic scholars to discuss the rapidly changing issues and ethics that affect contemporary society and healthcare. The conference is due to take place on Sunday November 17th at the SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn. It is sponsored by SUNY – Health Science Center at Brooklyn and organized by the National Association of Judaism and Medicine (NAJM).

“This is a rare opportunity that allows for the exchange of valuable information,” said Dr. Michael Akerman, Associate Professor of Medicine at SUNY Downstate and Conference Program Director. “Our objective has always been to create an environment where doctors, rabbis and scientists have an open dialogue about the contribution and approach of Judaism to ethics, contemporary medicine and society as a whole.”

The morning opens with a plenary session discussing Cloning – New Horizons. During this session the panel of experts will be discussing embryo and stem cell research. Stem Cells hold huge promise for curing many “incurable” diseases. However in the United States, Stem Cell research is strongly regulated. That session is to be followed by several simultaneous sessions, including Animal Experimentation, Ethical Issues in Pediatric Care and Healthy Mind- Healthy Body. Dr. Robert Pollack, Director of The Center for the Study of Science and Religion at Columbia University will be among the prestigious panelists at the Mind-Body Medicine session.

Rabbi Jacob Klass, Torah and Halachic Editor of the Jewish Press and a leader in the Jewish Community, will be the Master of Ceremonies at the conference luncheon. The Guest of Honor at the luncheon is Dr. Fred Rosner, a man who has done much for human dignity in the practice of medicine. Dr. Rosner is an international authority on medical ethics and a distinguished author of more than 20 books. The tribute to Dr. Rosner will take place during the Luncheon Program. Presenters include NAJM Director, Dr. Michael Akerman, Dr. Jo Ann Bradley; Senior VP at SUNY Downstate, and the Keynote Speaker; Dr Edward Reichman of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Dr. Reichman will address the subject of Jewish response to medical innovation throughout the ages.

After lunch the second plenary session will address The Ethical Aftermath of September 11th, the issues of body identification and resultant questions of remarriage and inheritance. These are very complex issues in Jewish Law with strict requirements for proof of death. Rabbi Reuven Feinstien shlita, will be addressing these issues. This is the first time the Rav will speak at a conference of this nature. The final simultaneous sessions will include Terrorism: Triage of Resources, Assisted Reproductive Technology, and a Medical Student Open Forum.

Each year the conference members establish an environment that allows attendees to dissect and defend the essential principles of medical practices and ethics reflected in the Bible, the Talmud, as well as writings of Maimonides and other classical and modern works of Jewish scholarship. Jewish values teach us to ask and question, a primary objective of this conference is to allow everyone attending and presenting the opportunity to ask questions, present opinions and propose options. It is through this open dialogue and the exchange of information that those in attendance can truly discuss Jewish ethical and moral priorities within the field of medicine and healthcare.

The conference will also be hosting pre-conference seminars over the weekend of November 15th and 16th in Brooklyn.



Editor's Note: The conference and pre-conference seminars are fully accredited through the ACCME to provide category 1 continuing medical education to physicians towards the American Medical Association Physician’s Recognition Award.

For more information please contact Dr. Akerman at SUNY or the NAJM office at 917-760-2770.

NEXT CONFERENCE
Tentatively to be held
May 2006 in New York City

CME accreditation provided by:
the SUNY-Downstate Medical Center



For more information, contact us:

Michael Akerman, MD, Chairman, Conference on Judaism and Medicine
c/o SUNY-Downstate Medical Center
450 Clarkson Avenue, Box 19
Brooklyn, New York 11203


Telephone 917-760-2770

 


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