2018 Women's Health & Advocacy Conference: Highlights

From Passion to Action: #HadassahDC2018 #Celebration2018

Hundreds of Hadassah members, supporters and leaders came together during National Women's Health Week for three powerful days in Washington, DC, united by their commitment to empowering women, to Israel, to health and women's health equity -- and to advocacy. An inspiring expression of The Power of Women Who DO, attendees turned their passion to action, earned Hadassah a brief mention in POLITICO Influence, made #HealthEquity4Her trend on Twitter in the DC area, and had fun celebrating Israel's 70th and the centennials of the Hadassah Medical Organization and the Henrietta Szold Hadassah-Hebrew University School of Nursing.

The conference kicked off with a warm welcome from Celebration 2018 Co-Chairs Frieda Rosenberg and Rhoda Smolow, and a thought-provoking panel, "Privacy & Information: Women's Health and Technology" at the National Press Club, with moderator Judy Woodruff of PBS Newshour, and panelists Rear Admiral Susan J. Blumenthal, Laura Moy, Tim Sparapani and Marcy Wilder.

The Coalition for Women's Health Equity — and Hadassah — presented the 2nd annual Women's Health Empowerment Summit, with Keynote Speaker Fatima Goss Graves, CEO and President of the National Women's Law Center, and legislative keynote speaker and physician Rep. Raul Ruiz (CA-36), who spoke of the importance of coming together to combat the severe inequities women face. Patient advocates Kathryn Fox and Starr Mirza moved many to tears with their personal stories of how gender discrimination in medicine impacts our lives in deeply personal ways. "Women are refusing to stay silent about misdiagnoses, the disproportionate burden of caregiving responsibilities, and the lasting scars of harassment and assault," said Hadassah National President Ellen Hershkin.

Panels featured discussions on the health impact of caregiving on women with moderator Jill Lesser, gender bias and mental health, and women and clinical trials, with moderator Fran Hawthorne.

Women's health advocates are moving the dial on women's health, said Hadassah Executive Director/CEO Janice Weinman. "We will make 2018 a year of success and progress for women everywhere."

The focus switched to Israel during the Chai-Tea event. "Thank you for everything you have done for the last century. My wish is that Hadassah will make as big a contribution in the next century as they did in the last," said Ron Dermer, Israeli Ambassador to the United States,, who was made an Associate by Associates President Jim Rotenberg and Vice President Louis Numkin. Then Ruth Radiano, Director of Nursing at Hadassah Mt. Scopus, shared some of her personal experiences building Hadassah's reputation as a leader in nursing, a follow up to "Nurses as Advocates: A Symposium," presented earlier by the Hadassah Nurses Council.

"We honor two nurses who mean so much to Hadassah and have done so much for the nursing profession in the US and Israel, Passion to Action Honorees Dr. Barbara Heller and Nancy Falchuk," said Hadassah National President Ellen Hershkin at the Touch of Red Gala, addressing an audience dressed in red, to honor Hadassah. Earlier that evening, Director General Zeev Rotstein of the Hadassah Medical Organization (HMO), wearing a red tie, talked about ensuring HMO's position as a global leader in medicine.

Broadway actress and singer Megan Hilty — star of NBC's Smash — brought her sumptuous voice to the Touch of Red Gala.

The persistent rain couldn't keep more than 250 Hadassah members and Associates from securing support for key legislation during their Day on the Hill. Representing 25 states, they met with policymakers from over 80 congressional offices to promote women's health equity, Holocaust education, gun safety, a strong US-Israel relationship, and more. Join us in urging our legislators to cosponsor and support the Never Again Education Act and the Health Equity and Accountability Act, reintroduced in the House of Representatives on May 23.

As part of Celebration 2018, the Hadassah Women's Health & Advocacy Conference gave those most passionate about Hadassah the tools to engage their communities and empower women back home, particularly around Hadassah's health and advocacy efforts in the United States and in Israel. As serious as some of those issues may be, it was also time to celebrate being together to recognize how far Hadassah and Israel have come as we celebrate our milestone anniversaries.

The energy and commitment at every session of this conference made one thing clear — these Hadassah members are ready to take Hadassah's legacy into the century ahead.

See the Action: Photos & Videos

Take a few minutes to experience some of the most exciting, informative, and inspirational moments from the Hadassah Women's Health & Advocacy Conference, and you'll see why so many individuals are proud to be part of our Hadassah family.
Video Highlights, Women's Health & Advocacy Conference
Photo Galleries, Women's Health & Advocacy Conference ›

Where We Stand: Three New Positions

Delegates to the Hadassah National Assembly debated and unanimously passed new Hadassah Policy Statements on unwavering support for Israel, gun control and medical marijuana.
Read our New Statement on Support for Israel ›
Read our New Statement on Gun Control ›
Read our New Statement on Medical Marijuana ›

Women's Health Empowerment Summit

This year's second annual summit, hosted by Hadassah and the 28-member Coalition for Women's Health Equity, focused on the inequities that endanger women's health and overall safety. The lineup included National Women's Law Center President/CEO Fatima Goss Graves, Rep. Raul Ruiz, MD (CA-36), and summit emcee Samantha Abrams.
Women's Health Empowerment Summit Videos ›
Speak out for the Health Equity and Accountability Act ›
Promote #HealthEquity4Her on social media ›

Celebration 2018

Turn your passion to action and join our yearlong celebration by getting involved with our Israel, health, and advocacy efforts. We've got a lot to celebrate: Israel's 70th and the centennials of HMO, the Henrietta Szold Hadassah-Hebrew University School of Nursing, and the Ophthalmology Department. Build on the momentum of the Women's Health and Advocacy Conference. You can celebrate with in Israel (From Dream to Innovation Hadassah Milestone Mission — early bird rate through June 13), help keep HMO ahead of the curve, or take action against hate and anti-Semitism.
Celebrate with Hadassah in Israel ›
Learn more about the Full Circle Campaign, 360° of Healing ›
Support the Never Again Education Act  ›

Thank You, Donors

Thank you to all the members, Associates and donors who helped make this conference a huge success, with a special thanks to some 80 generous supporters who together donated nearly $900,000, mainly to support the Full Circle Campaign, 360° of Healing for the Hadassah Medical Organization (HMO) that includes a state-of-the-art simulation center. We're grateful to each and every donor who contributed. Learn more.

Thank You, Sponsors

Thank you to all the sponsors who helped make the Hadassah Women's Health & Advocacy Conference such a success.

Video Highlights

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