Home > What we do > Medicine & Healthcare > hMedicine > hMedicine Story

Congressman’s Unexpected Stay at Hadassah Has Happy Ending

Congressman Doug LaMalfa at Hadassah's hospital.
Congressman Doug LaMalfa leaving Hadassah's hospital.

While Congressman Doug LaMalfa of California was visiting Israel with his wife, Jill, on an American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) mission, he suffered a kidney stone attack and found himself a patient at Hadassah Medical Organization.

The Congressman began feeling pain during the evening; by midnight the pain had become so severe that he was taken to Hadassah. "Doug has a high tolerance for pain," Mrs. LaMalfa relates, "so I knew something was very wrong."

Neither the Congressmen nor Mrs. LaMalfa were familiar with the Hadassah Medical Center or Hadassah, the organization, although Mrs. LaMalfa had been involved in a Bible study where she learned about Esther and her Hebrew name, Hadassah. "The staff reminded me of Esther," she notes, "and after spending about 24 hours at the Medical Center, "I understood that the spirit of Hadassah is in the women."

Mrs. LaMalfa, who had never been to Israel before, was extremely moved by the kindness she and her husband were shown. As she expresses,
"How many places can you be where perfect strangers come to you with such kindness?"

Barbara Goldstein, Deputy Director of Hadassah's Office in Israel, for example, brought them some dates. Sarabeth Lukin, Israel Coordinator for the Influentials to Israel Program, visited with them and took extra care to make sure they felt they had a friend at Hadassah to help them through this unexpected "detour" in the trip. In response to a query from the Congressman about the meaning of Hadassah, Mrs. Lukin also enlightened them about Hadassah's founder, Henrietta Szold, and the beginning years of Hadassah Hospital.

Prof. Dov Pode, head of the Department of Urology, visited the Congressman several times. In addition, Head Nurse Saad Gera made it a point of dropping in every 20 minutes or so to make sure the Congressman was not in pain. Dr. Yuval Weiss, Director of Hadassah-Ein Kerem, was in constant contact with the physicians and nurses taking care of Mr. LaMalfa.

The Institute of General Medicine comprises thirteen departments and nine Centers of Excellence. Each a leader in its field, the Centers include the Unit for the Early Detection of Colorectal Cancer, Center for Aging Research, National Center for Down Syndrome, and National SLE (LUPUS) Center. Its stellar Intensive Care Unit is world renowned.

DONATE

Join

Advocate

Lead

LEARN MORE

View all of our Impact Areas

After a stay in the emergency room, Mr. LaMalfa was eventually transferred to a private room in the Department of Urology in the Sarah Wetsman Davidson Hospital Tower. When he later met Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, they conversed about the amazing new facility, since the Prime Minister had just been a patient there a few days before the Congressman for a hernia repair.

Senior Urologist Prof. Ofer Gofrit alleviated most of the Congressman's pain with the insertion of a stent, a flexible plastic tube placed between the kidney and the bladder to allow urine to flow unobstructed, prevent damage to the blocked kidney, and facilitate passage of the stones. As a result, the LaMalfas were able to continue their tour of Israel as planned. They report that at AIPAC's closing dinner, Hadassah received a "shout out," in recognition of the excellent and kind care the Congressman received.

Rep. LaMalfa, who describes himself as "an old fashioned farmer who grows rice" in the northern reaches of California near the Oregon border, enthusiastically volunteered to speak about his experience at Hadassah chapters in his district and beyond. Describing his experience at the hospital, the Congressman said: "We were as comfortable and confident about the care there as if we were at home. If it can be fun, they made it so!"

"I don't believe in chance or even accidents much," relates Mrs. LaMalfa, "so I know that the people we met and the experiences we had at and through Hadassah were meant to be. Aside from the pain Doug has endured, we consider this all to be a blessing."

Date: 9/12/2013

Hadassah’s Advanced Gene Sequencing Changes the Life of a Family from Uzbekistan

IDF Medic Heroically Battles Terrorist, Both Treated at Hadassah

Orthopedic Trauma Turns Tragedy into Innovation at Hadassah

On the Cutting-Edge of Melanoma Treatment: Hadassah’s Protocols and Research

Saving a Newborn from a Life Without Sight

Terrorist and Victim Sent to Hadassah's Hospitals After Third Attack in Two Weeks

Three Sent to Hadassah After Second Jerusalem Terror Attack of the Week

Clinical Trial of Hadassah-Developed Stem Cell Treatment for Macular Degeneration Gets Go-Ahead from FDA

“We Don’t Say ‘No’,” Hadassah Neurosurgeon Explains in Operating on 82-Year-Old Patient

Cutting-Edge Medicine and Research; a Role Model for Peace: A Briefing from the Hospital's Director General

4 Ways Hadassah Hospital is Preparing for Ebola—Just in Case

Hailing from 17 Countries: the 39th Graduation Class of Hadassah’s International Master of Public Health Program

At Hadassah, Four Recover, Two Tragically Perish After Light Rail Attack

Other Doctors Suggested Aborting the Baby. The Experts at Hadassah Knew Better.

Hadassah Doctor Receives International Prize for Medical Innovation

Hadassah Doctors Rescue Frostbitten Nepal Avalanche Victim

Thousands Mourn Loss of Young Israeli Hero

A Mysterious Case Sends a Family Searching for Cures, Finding Hadassah

Grateful Patients, Their Families, and Their Doctors Offer Thanks

Head of Hadassah's Hospital Addresses The Economist Health Care Forum



More hMedicine Stories




Hadasit, Hadassah’s Technology Transfer Arm, Reviews 2012’s Accomplishments

When the Hadassah University Medical Center’s physicians suggest a solution to a medical problem which can lead to the development of a new medicine or product, Hadasit, Hadassah’s technology transfer arm, explores its feasibility and supports the promotion of those viable ideas with innovation potential. Although 2012 has been “a year full of challenges for the life science industry,” says Einat Zisman, Hadasit’s Chief Executive Officer, Hadasit still signed 125 agreements for clinical trials, all to be done at Hadassah. In addition, Hadasit signed 15 agreements for cooperation and commercialization of technologies that were developed at Hadassah. Click here to read the latest Newsletter from Hadasit >>

   |  Who We Are  |  What We Do  |  Where We Do It  |  Read About It  |  Join Now  |  Donate  |
  |  Login  |  Contact Us  |  Careers  |  Terms & Conditions  |  
Copyright ©2014 Hadassah is a registered trademark of Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America