Jerusalem Post 50 Most Influential Jews: Number 44 - Lior Sasson

Sasson and his team have treated children from over 50 countries around the world.

Lior Sasson (photo credit: SACH)
Lior Sasson
(photo credit: SACH)
Dr. Lior Sasson, the lead surgeon of the well-known Israel-based nonprofit organization Save a Child’s Heart, is the epitome of what a doctor should be.
In May, Dr. Lior Sasson and his medical team at the Wolfson Medical Center in Holon conducted emergency heart surgery on four-year-old Sanusey from Gambia for some four hours after he stopped breathing.
The operation was a success. Sanusey, who had a congenital heart defect, was the 4,000th child saved by Save a Child’s Heart.
Sasson was born in 1960 and studied medicine at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beersheba. He did a fellowship in pediatric cardiac surgery at the Mott Children’s Hospital at the University of Michigan, under the world-renowned pediatric heart surgeon, Prof. Edward L. Bove.
After the death of Dr. Ami Cohen, who founded SACH in 1995, Sasson became the person most associated with the organization, whose top sponsor is philanthropist Morris Kahn.
Sasson and his team have treated children from over 50 countries around the world, many of them in Africa and the Middle East, and some from states with which Israel does not have diplomatic ties.
After a lifesaving operation on a Syrian girl named Niyaz, Sasson said that his team conducted such procedures “knowing that no one else will do it and the patients will die if the surgeries don’t happen. To see the patients recovering after the surgeries is beyond any description.
I think it’s a gift to be able to make a difference in this crazy world around us.”
Sasson announced recently that construction had begun on Wolfson’s International Pediatric Cardiac Center, whose goal is “to ensure that the over 5.5 million children in developing countries with heart disease will have access to the medical care they need to survive and thrive.”
On Sasson’s operating table, politics, religion and country of origin mean nothing. All that matters for Sasson and his team is saving the lives of children.