A delegation of Israeli doctors has just returned from Tbilisi, where they worked together with their Georgian counterparts to help children with difficult and complex conditions.
With the support of Georgian President Giorgi Margvelasvili a team of Israeli surgeons visit Tbilisi twice a year to examine and treat children with issues beyond the expertise of their local counterparts. The Israeli doctors work closely with Georgian medical professionals, transferring their knowledge and experience.
For the past five years pediatric surgeons from Rambam Medical Center in Haifa have traveled regularly to Georgia, a country located at the crossroads of Eastern Europe and Western Asia, to treat children with complex medical problems.
This time it was a delegation of pediatric surgeons and personnel from the intensive care and anesthesia departments of Rambam’s Ruth Rappaport Children’s Hospital that spent five intensive days in Tbilisi, Georgia’s capital.
The unique cooperative project between Rambam and Georgia is ongoing throughout the year with consultations about former patients treated by the Rambam team as well as for new patients.
The collaboration was initiated several years ago as part of an international project to enhance the state of medicine in Eastern European countries. Chaired by the President of Georgia himself, the project is supported by the pediatric surgery department at Rambam and its parallel department at the children’s hospital in Tbilisi, Givi Zhvania, a connection that was formed five years ago and has since been closely observed throughout the region.
“Over the years the Rambam team has managed to treat a fairly large group of patients at the Georgian hospital and take advantage of their time in Tbilisi to examine past patients and monitor their condition. The fact that we are engaged in an ongoing partnership with the medical staff in Tbilisi has many benefits in terms of patient care and helps us to provide optimal treatment for patients we have been following for some time. It can be said that this is really an extension of Rambam in Georgia,” says Dr. Ran Steinberg, Director of Pediatric Surgery at Rambam and head of the project.
“On the first day of our arrival we examine the cases and complete all the necessary inquiries. In the days that remain we analyze and treat as many children as possible for many hours in two parallel operating rooms. These are complex and sometimes challenging cases but the intention is to help as many children as possible while we are there.”
One of the doctors on the Rambam team is Dr. Arkadi Vachian, the director of the Minimally Invasive Surgery unit at the “Ruth” Children’s Hospital. “Dr. Vachian was born and raised in Tbilisi and moved to Israel as a young doctor. This reunion is exciting every time,” Steinberg says.