Summer Program in Medical Ethics and Halacha

Since 1998, the Institute has run an annual month long summer program (in English), for medical students from around the world. The students come to Israel to study and deepen their knowledge of issues pertaining to medical ethics and Halacha. They hear some of the finest lecturers on the subject, including doctors and rabbis, as they raise hot-button halachic and ethical dilemmas of contemporary medicine. The courses include tours of the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in patient wards, as well as trips around the country.

This program is sponsored by:

Summer Program in Medical Ethics and Halacha

Join our facebook group: "The Schlesinger Institute's Jewish Medical Ethics summer program"

Dates: July 1-25th, 2013

Goals:To develop advanced independent learning skills and provide in-depth lectures on medical-halachic topics.
To bridge the complex worlds of medicine, ethics, and halacha for the physicians of tomorrow.

Target group:
Medical students (men and women) with a substantial background in Jewish learning.

Curriculum: To view the last summer program timetable click here

  • Text-based learning on both theoretical and practical issues
  • Case studies
  • Hospital rounds for practical experience relating to halachic problems
  • Weekly group tours and activities
  • Independent learning
  • Topics will be chosen from among the following: The practice of medicine and Jewish law, AIDS, allocation of scarce resources, definition of death, fertility issues and treatments, genetic engineering and screening, halachot for the physician and patient on Shabbat and holidays, medical experimentation, organ transplants, physician-assisted suicide, psychiatry, physician-patient issues, and others.

The curriculum may qualify for credit at medical schools.

Lectures will be held at the Schlesinger Institute, at Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, Israel. Hospital rounds will take place at Shaare Zedek Hospital.

Students will be provided with living facilities near Shaare Zedek Medical Center. Married couples are responsible for their own accommodation.

Including tuition, lodging, tours and lunch: US $2900.
Scholarships are available. To submit a scholarship application form click here.

For an application form click here.


Program Schedule

To view summer 2010 timetable click on one of the following:

  • Word (MS Word 2000+)
  • PDF (Acrobat Reader)


Comments from past seminars


"It was truly a rewarding and enlightening experience." -student

"It will assist me greatly in my future career as a doctor who cares about Torah and Mitzvot." - student

"I hope and pray that with the knowledge I have learned I will be able to fully integrate medicine & Halacha and be the best physician that I can be." - student

Throughout the month of July, medical students from the United States, Canada, England and Scotland attended the summer program at The Schlesinger Institute to learn from prominent lecturers and foremost experts in the area of medical halacha including Prof. Jonathan Halevy, Prof. Avraham Steinberg, Prof. Abraham Abraham, Dr. Mordechai Halperin and Rabbi Shabtai Rappaport. Thanks to the generous participation of these lecturers (and many others) we have been able to inspire our students in the topics of infertility and early life issues, physician – patient relationship, end of life issues and being a physician on shabbat and chagim.

In addition to these lectures, the students shadowed doctors during rounds in the hospital and visited the IVF clinic. The aim of this was twofold; First, to expose the students to the practical workings of a hospital in Israel including the Halachic aspects. Secondly, to provide the students with suitable role-models that would inspire them in the development of their careers as Dati doctors.

As part of the program students paid visits to The Lehava Institute of Technology & Halacha, Infertility Clinic; Puah, and Yad Sarah; the Institute for facilities to help the disabled. Two group Shabbatot were organized, one in Tzfat and one in the Shaare Zedek hospital with the aim to show the students how a Dati hospital is run during Shabbat.

This extraordinary program could not have been possible without the sponsorship of The Joseph N. Muschel Memorial Foundation in Monsey, New York and The Alisa Flatow Memorial Scholarship Fund in West Orange, New Jersey.

A warm welcome to our new sponsor, The Cypess Family Foundation from Potomac, Maryland. They awarded two student fellowships for the summer program 2003. We are very happy to have the Cypess family as a supporter of the program and hope that the Schlesinger Institute can count on their support for many years come.

The success of the program has again proved to us the necessity of raising the awareness of The Schlesinger Institute and verified for us the need to increase our efforts in educating and elevating the knowledge, skill, and Halachic commitment of the next generation of Jewish doctors.