A collaboration agreement in the field of healthcare, medical education, clinical research and hospital management was signed on Tuesday between the Hadassah Medical Organization and Brussels’ Jules Bordet Institute -- Belgium’s only hospital dealing exclusively with cancer. Joint research with Hadassah has already begun in breast cancer and pediatric oncology, with other fields to follow soon.

Present at the Jerusalem ceremony was Belgium’s foreign minister and deputy prime Minister Didier Reynders. Representing HMO was its deputy director responsible for research, Prof. Yaakov Naparstek. “In signing business agreements, there’s always the feeling that one side is getting more than the other,” said Naparstek. “In contrast, when you sign an agreement to share information, you both enjoy the growing reservoir of knowledge.”

“This is a very emotional experience for me,” said Reynders. “There isn’t a more meaningful way to cooperate than treating breast cancer and cancer in children. Hadassah is also a bridge for peace. Working together, these two great hospitals are finding ways to add to the betterment of humanity.”

Speaking for the Jules Bordet Institute,  Prof. Maurice Sosnowski -- who is head of the anesthesiology department  and president of Hadassah International- Belgium, said,  “Joint science and research is proof that the stupidity of hatred contributes nothing to humankind, but cooperation and life-saving medicine will save the world.”

The ceremony took place in the Abbell Synagogue, home of the Chagall windows, at Hadassah University Medical Center in Ein Kerem. The delegation toured the hemo-oncology  ward and laboratories for gene therapy.

Meanwhile, an agreement on research cooperation in giving drugs to children was also signed Tuesday by the Hebrew University’s School of Pharmacy and Drexel University and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. It took place in the City Hall office of Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat and was attended by the mayor of Philadelphia, Michael Nutter.

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