Groundbreaking Shabbos Program Promotes Torah Principles in Medicine
February 16, 2023

The Coalition for Jewish Values Healthcare Council (CJV-HC) today shared news from its inaugural program for Shabbos-observant doctors and medical students, calling it “a profound statement regarding the true Jewish view on life, gender, and the role of the medical professional.” Coalition for Jewish Values represents over 2,000 traditional, observant rabbis in American public policy, and the CJV-HC, formed in the summer of 2022, brings together observant healthcare professionals concerned for conscience rights and value-driven medical care.

The Matthew Bulfin Educational Conference is an annual pro-life, pro-values event convened by the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG) and the American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds). This year, it welcomed over two dozen Jewish attendees with a full range of services and programming under the auspices of CJV and the CJV-HC. Attendees described the conference and Shabbos program in superlative terms, with regards to the educational content, the special Shabbos environment, and the obvious welcome from others.

“Leftist Jewish activists have distorted true Torah teachings regarding life-affirming medical care,” said Dr. Yehuda Mond, Chair of CJV-HC. “In recent years, they have begun to defend destructive medical interventions as if they, too, reflect Jewish values. This makes it doubly important that Jewish healthcare professionals guided by Torah principles make their perspective known, and this conference provided us an outstanding opportunity.”

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The special program, dubbed “Shabbos @ AAPLOG” by organizers, featured regular davening [Jewish prayer services], Torah reading, and catered Kosher meals in a separate ballroom. The schedule incorporated addresses from observant attendees along with Dr. Richard Sandler, a Jewish board member of ACPeds, and a special keynote lecture by Dr. Donna Harrison, Executive Director of AAPLOG, while also allowing the doctors to attend Bulfin Conference sessions on Friday, Shabbos afternoon, and Sunday morning.

In post-conference reviews, attendees said they had learned a great deal, besides enjoying a wonderful Shabbos together. They also spoke of finding common cause with other doctors who share similar views, networking opportunities, and gaining a better appreciation of the need to advocate for their individual rights of conscience in their medical careers. Most of all, they overwhelmingly said they would recommend this and other CJV-HC programs to others, to build a network of Jewish medical professionals concerned about mutual challenges and opportunities.

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