Soroka Medical Center
Defending Israel’s Health
Spring Greetings & Passover Appeal
Dear Friends,
On behalf of the Board of Directors of American Friends of Soroka Medical Center, and the entire staff of Soroka Medical Center, I extend to you best wishes for a Happy and Healthy Passover. If your travel plans for Passover or the coming summer vacation months include Israel - we encourage you to visit the Soroka campus in Beer Sheva. It is extraordinarily moving to witness first-hand the care, scale, energy and diversity that is evident in every corner of our campus. We will gladly arrange a tour for you to accommodate your particular interests.
As we approach Passover we pray, as always, for peace. The imagery of November’s Pillar of Defense operation in the Negev is quite vivid: "And the angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud removed from before them and stood behind them; and it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud and the darkness here, yet gave it light by night there; and the one came not near the other all the night.” [Exodus, 14:19-20]. In times of emergency, Soroka’s amazing and compassionate medical staff are 100% mobilized to keep the hospital functioning, protect our patients and treat all wounded – victims of physical and emotional trauma. May our prayers for an enduring peace be answered.
I would like to share a moving excerpt from an essay written by a Soroka physician from the Department of Psychiatry during the Pillar of Defense operation that illuminates the extraordinary intensity in which we operate and the essence of caring and depth of emotion of our staff. “My personal war has been going on for a long time. A fierce battle is taking place on the front. For the past several years mortar shells and trajectory missiles have been flying over my house and the surrounding fence has been breached and attacked. The world of colors has taken on new meaning (“red” is the code for imminent missile attack)…. the notion of "a safe place" or "my house is my castle" has been eroded with time. Paradoxically, my workplace in Beer Sheva became, for most of the time, a type of safe haven for my patients and myself. The Milstein Trauma Recovery Center where I work is a small quiet corner in the hospital. There I find my office to be quieter and more comfortable than where my own children are. The larger the gap, the greater the tension and divergence between the interior and the exterior. This war is long, but apparently not so intensive, like a drawn-out headache, piercingly quiet - a constant alertness in anticipation of the inevitable transition from routine to emergency. Apparently the only way humankind can deal with it is to join both of them into "Emergency Routine". The radio tells me to make the transition, right now, without a moment to spare. In another week, with the declaration of a ceasefire, I'll be expected to reverse the transition, to switch back to routine; once again, immediately, without hesitation, but the body has its own rhythm. The psyche too." We have become expert by default at executing this transition as seamlessly as possible.
Please consider a gift to Soroka Medical Center during this Passover holiday season. Your generosity will enable us to provide critical care to Israelis in times of emergency, further our cutting edge research, and help fulfill our life-saving mission.
With our Sincere Appreciation for your Support,
Rachel Heisler Sheinfeld
Executive Director
Gala Benefit Dinner Announced
Mandy Patinkin
Dr. Shimon Glick
The American Friends of Soroka Medical Center Proudly Announces the Honorees for our Gala Dinner, to be held on Tuesday, June 18, 2013 at The Harvard Club in NYC. Professor Shimon Glick, Founding Chairman of the Division of Medicine will receive the Visionary Leadership Award, in tribute to his outstanding career at Soroka.
Mandy Patinkin, Acclaimed Actor, Singer and Current star of hit show Homeland, will receive the Statesman for Health Award. Details will follow shortly. There will be a tribute journal and table/journal packages. Committee is in formation. Please contact us to join committee or volunteer at dinner
Ruth Steinberg
AFSMC warmly welcomes Ruth Steinberg to the Board. Ms. Steinberg is the Head Trader for the U.S. Division at Avenue Capital Group. She is a graduate of Clark University with a Bachelor of Arts degree and Honors in History and received her J.D. cum laude from the University Of Connecticut School of Law. Ms. Steinberg resides in Scarsdale, NY with her husband Jeffrey and three children, where she has been a leader in Jewish communal life.
  • Benefit Dinner in NYC
  • Parlor Meeting in Riverdale
  • Inaugural Miami Fundraiser
  • Long Island Event
We invite you to volunteer to help us in the planning of these events, and hope you will attend! Please contact us with any questions.

Dr. Shimon Glick
Dr. Shimon Glick
Dr. Shimon Glick’s career spans major accomplishments in medical science and patient care, as well as international stature as a leading thinker in modern Jewish Medical Ethics. We are extremely proud that Dr. Glick will be the guest of honor at the upcoming Soroka Gala Benefit Dinner – he is exceptionally well deserving of the honor that will be bestowed upon him on June 18 at The Harvard Club in NYC. Dr. Glick has taught and inspired generations of physicians at Soroka, and he has a strong network of professional colleagues around the world, developed over the years through collaborations emanating from his cutting-edge research in the US and Israel. We hope you will join us in honoring him at what will be a wonderful celebration.
Dr. Shimon Glick is a native of New Jersey and graduate of Downstate Medical Center in New York. He trained in internal medicine at Maimonides Medical Center, Yale University Medical Center and Mount Sinai Hospital, and was a research fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Solomon Berson and Nobel Laureate Dr. Rosalyn Yalow at the Bronx Veterans Administration Hospital, where he made major research contributions in the field of endocrinology. Dr. Glick served as Chief of Medical Services at the Coney Island Hospital in Brooklyn and Clinical Professor of Medicine at the Downstate Medical Center. He was President of the Association of Orthodox Jewish Scientists in the USA from 1965-67, and co-founder and first president of the Society of Urban Physicians, an activist group of department chairmen for improvement of patient care conditions in New York City's municipal hospitals.
In 1974 he made aliya and became Professor of Medicine and founding Chairman of the Division of Medicine at Soroka Medical Center, also serving at the new Ben-Gurion University Faculty of Health Sciences. He joined Soroka Medical Center specifically because it was in one of the most underserved areas in Israel – and he has been working continuously at Soroka for the past 39 years. Dr. Glick served as Dean of the BGU School of Medicine and head of health services in the Negev region, and head of the Moshe Prywes Center for Medical Education. He was President of the Israeli Endocrine Society. For over a decade he served as the ombudsman for Israel's National Health Service. He has received numerous awards including lifetime achievement awards from Israel's Ministry of Health, and from the Israeli Society of Internal Medicine. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Science of the United States.
Dr. Glick is considered by many as The Father of Humanistic Medicine. Through his leadership, Soroka has been become a flagship for very unique compassionate and humanistic care. He has headed the center for medical education where health care providers are trained to treat the The Patient as a Human Being. By personal example he initiated the strong trend of Top Physicians who volunteered to provide free care in outlying towns throughout the entire Negev to Israel's most indigent.
Throughout all his years in Soroka Hospital he has inspired students and young physicians to adopt a compassionate approach to all patients. He has also played a major role in recruiting outstanding physicians to join the Soroka Team and help make Soroka one of the leading hospitals in Israel.
Dr. Glick is also considered a world leader in Medical Ethics and was the Chair of The Lord Rabbi Immanuel Jakobovits Center for Medical Ethics at BGU. He has published extensively on issues related to organ transplantation, approach to the terminal patients, telling the truth to the patients, physician compassion and much more.
Professor Glick is the husband of Brenda (nee Rubenstein), father of 6, grandfather of 46, and great- grandfather of 41. The family is part of the fabric of Israeli society, represented in the fields of Medicine, Education, High Tech, Law and Military Service.
Westchester County Solidarity Rally for Israel
November 20, 2012 - AFSMC, led by volunteers Debbie Markowitz and Lorraine Kransdorf, manned and information booth at an emergency solidarity rally for Israel, organized by the Westchester Jewish Council. We thank the Westchester community for supporting Soroka so generously in this urgent time. We were able to raise additional funds to support our emergency campaign, raising enough money to fund the purchase of urgently needed resuscitation equipment
Soroka Soiree
December, 6 2012 - Congregation Shearith Israel – The Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue - was the scene of our first Soroka Soiree! A wonderful group of 75 new Friends of Sorok a gathered to celebrate the last night of Hanukah together. Based upon the good time had by all, we will work to develop programming for this group and hope to build on the success. Proceeds of the event, which included a silent Auction, were designated to support Soroka’s emergency preparedness programs.

Mario Zilberberg, Sam Katz, Tova Reiner
Steven Hirsch, Howard Levy
Howard Aubrey and Alice Deutsch
Hanukah Arts Celebration
December 15, 2012 - Thanks for the warmth and generosity of Anatole Bekkerman, owner of ABA Gallery, for hosting Soroka’s unique Hanukah ARTS Celebration. Guests were invited to view the exclusive exhibit – curated from the private collection of Mikhail Baryshnikov, as well as Russian grand master paintings from the ABA collection. Guests were treated to a concert by the amazing Gerard Edery, whose terrific voice and touching melodies inspired the audience. Dr. Agneta Golan , director of Soroka’s NICU, spoke about the perils of conducting medicine under fire, as is often required at Soroka, and also explained the urgent project she has undertaken – to build a “safe” new Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Please contact the office for additional information on this project.

Marilyn Damast, Dr. Therese Rosenblatt Sonenshine, Melanie Lee and Caroline Freidfertig
Gerard Edery
Anatoly Bekkerman, Dr. Reina Marin and Emilio Bassini
Informative Evening Featuring Dr. Agneta Golan
Daphna Goren, Dr. Agneta Golan
and Rachel Heisler Sheinfeld
November 28, 2102 – Cleveland, OHIO – Mandel JCC Under the local leadership of Daphna Judith Goren, Soroka was welcomed to the Cleveland community for an informative evening featuring Dr. Agneta Golan, the director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Nearly 50 guests attended the talk at the Mandel JCC hear Dr. Golan’s presentation on “Medicine Under Fire – What I Did Not Learn in Medical School!”. We look forward to returning to Cleveland and building support from this important and vibrant Jewish community. Thank you to Daphna and to Devorah Silverman for organizing this beautiful and meaningful evening.
Negev Center for Eating Disorders Parlor Meeting in NYC
Feb. 6, 2013 - Dr. Reina Marin and Mr. Emilio Bassini hosted a beautiful cocktail reception in their home in honor of Dr. Shosh Arbelle, Chief of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Soroka Director, Vivian & Seymour Milstein Family Trauma Recovery Center. Dr. Arbelle introduced the group to her fascinating and vitally needed project – the building of a new Negev Center for Eating Disorders.
Advanced Brain Imaging Capabilities at Soroka
Former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon
Soroka’s extraordinarily brain imaging and diagnostic capabilities received international exposure in January when the family of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon brought him to Soroka for special tests. While this was widely reported in the international media, we are pleased to share with you here an insider’s view of the recent brain scan from Dr. Ilan Shelef, Director of the Diagnostic Imaging Department at Soroka Medical Center. Dr. Shelef explains the scan was performed on Ariel Sharon at the request of his sons, because they believed that their father had some level of consciousness. They were desperate to find out if their beliefs had a scientific basis. Sharon’s sons have visited him every day for the last seven years and a brain scan had not been performed in approximately five years.
Sharon’s family knew that Soroka Medical Center and Ben-Gurion University share the newest MRI equipment on the market. Along with Professor Martin Monti from UCLA, the Soroka doctors agreed to perform the scan. Typically, this MRI machine is not used on comatose patients.
After five minutes, the report showed that Sharon’s sons were in fact correct; there was brain activity in the former Prime Minister of Israel. Dr. Shelef said this was a very emotional moment for the entire team.
While the family has not decided what the next steps will be for Ariel Sharon, Dr. Shelef stated, “Soroka Medical Center hopes to develop a relationship with Professor Monti (who was present for the scan) and begin research on these types of patients. It is not just important for clinical research, but for the families as well.”