Professor Ehud S. Kokia,
General of Hadassah Medical
NEW YORK – Hadassah Medical
Organization, the pioneering health care provider for the State of Israel,
today welcomed Professor Ehud S. Kokia as its Director General.
By assuming the leadership of Hadassah Medical
Organization, which includes both Hadassah University Hospital Ein Kerem and
Hadassah University Hospital Mount Scopus, Professor Kokia replaces Professor
Shlomo Mor-Yosef, who served as Director General for 11 years. The
Hadassah Medical Organization Board of Directors named Kokia to the role in
“I undertake this important responsibility with appreciation
and awe for the Hadassah Medical Organization’s pioneering contributions to the
State of Israel and the Israeli medical system,” Prof. Kokia said. “I know that as they have for decades,
HMO’s 6,000 employees will be at my side as we continue the path that was paved
by my colleague and friend Prof. Shlomo Mor-Yosef. And I know they will be joined by the hundreds of thousands
of members, friends and supporters of the Hadassah Women's Zionist Organization
of America, to help us continue to provide superb patient care and produce
“I eagerly await the opening of the Sarah Wetsman Davidson
Hospital Tower, our outstanding new in-patient facility, which will enhance the
Hadassah Medical Organization’s already extraordinary international reputation
for excellence and look forward to working with my colleagues to help realize
Hadassah’s historic mission.”
Kokia, 61, has a 37-year career as a physician and
health-care executive. Most
recently, he was CEO of Maccabi Healthcare Services, a position he held since
“With a particular interest in quality assurance and patient services,
Prof. Kokia recognizes the unique qualities of our hospitals and approaches his
new responsibilities with experience, energy and enthusiasm,” said Joyce Rabin,
HMO Chair, Hadassah Board of Directors. “He joins us at a
pivotal time in our history as we approach the dedication of the Sarah Wetsman
Davidson Hospital Tower in October 2012 during Hadassah’s Centennial Convention
Kokia received his medical degree cum laude from Tel Aviv
University’s Sackler School of Medicine in 1974. He completed his training as a specialist in obstetrics and
gynecology at Sheba Hospital and received a master’s in health administration
at Ben Gurion University. He is a
Lieutenant Colonel in the Israel Defense Forces, served as Commander of the Air
Force Center for Aerial Medicine, and completed the flight surgeon course of
the American Navy in Pensacola, Fla.
Kokia was a research fellow at the Division of Reproductive
Endocrinology at the University of Maryland, Baltimore. He worked in the
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Sheba Hospital before moving to
Maccabi Healthcare Services, where he has held critical roles over the last 16
years. Before becoming CEO, he
served as Medical Director of the large non-profit health care provider which
includes 5,300 clinics, 5,000 physicians and a network of hospitals.
Kokia has taught at Ben Gurion University of the Negev and
Tel Aviv University, and published widely on topics including endocrinology,
fertility and health policy.
Kokia and his wife Dr. Ira Kokia, a pediatrician and
specialist in community health, have two children.
“I am especially
proud to speak on behalf of over 300,000 members and friends in the United
States and worldwide as I welcome Prof. Ehud Kokia as our new Director
General,” said Marcie Natan, National President of Hadassah, the Women’s
Zionist Organization of America. “As we approach Hadassah’s centennial
celebration in 2012, we look forward to working with him as we walk in the footsteps
of our founder, Henrietta Szold, to provide world-class research and outstanding
medical care to over one million patients that come through the doors of our
hospitals each year.”
Hadassah has raised $260 million toward its Tower campaign goal of $363
million. Part of the remaining sum
includes a $35 million grant from the government of Israel.
Letter to Hadassah Employees from Ehud Kokia
I am proud to be joining the Hadassah Family today; a prestigious and very
special family. It is a great honor for me to be counted among its members.
I am proud to continue down the path that my dear friend Prof. Shlomo
Mor-Yosef and each of HMO’s previous Director General’s took and I promise to do my utmost to be
worthy of inclusion in this esteemed group.
The Israeli healthcare system in general and Hadassah in specific face many
challenges, specifically economic challenges; less than simple employment
relations, in which our youngest colleagues are involved; and professional challenges.
Nonetheless, I am naturally an optimist and truly believe that we can stand up
to these challenges for two important reasons.
Firstly, the quality of the staff at Hadassah is extraordinary and this
is the case in every sector: physicians, nursing, para-medical, administrative
and maintenance. It is up to each and every one of us to put our collective
shoulder to the grindstone towards our common goal: to preserve the Hadassah
Hospitals as the State of Israel’s leading Medical Center and one of the
world’s finest medical institutions.
The second reason and not less important is the historical relationship
between the Hadassah Hospitals and Hadassah, The Women’s Zionist Organization
of America (HWZOA). I am certain that this relationship, so very important to
both the Hospitals and HWZOA, will flourish and significantly contribute to
We have an extraordinary opportunity this coming year to dedicate the
Sarah Wetsman Davidson Hospital
Tower and turn Hadassah, both nationally and internationally, into one of the
world’s most modern medical centers, providing our personnel with a most fitting facility, where one will certainly be able to “judge
a book by its cover”. Additionally, during the coming year we will celebrate
HWZOA’s centennial birthday, an historic date that will accompany us throughout
I cannot end without mentioning and describing the impressive activities
of “Mr. Hadassah”: Prof. Shlomo Mor-Yosef who served as Director General for
more than a decade and Hadassah for nearly forty years. I am certain that if we
look at the aerial view of Hadassah from a decade ago we would not recognize
the area with its extraordinary development and construction momentum and whose
crowning jewel is the Sarah Wetsman Davidson Hospital Tower. This was Shlomo's
accomplishment, achieved in his very special and modest way. Buildings,
however, did not suffice for Shlomo. He advanced Hadassah in all areas of
medical and human resource development. He brought Hadassah to the highest
levels in medicine, research and teaching.
For all of this I am most grateful and am certain that his name will be
engraved in gold in Hadassah’s Book of Chronicles. I wish him much success in
everything that he may choose to do.
It is up to us to carry with pride Hadassah’s good name and do everything
within our power to bring even greater honor and glory to this wonderful
institution. Once again, I promise to give my all in order to add my modest
contribution to what you, my dear employees, have done and will continue to do
in the future.