A lifesaving kidney, donated with permission from the family of a 38-year-old man who died after a stroke, was donated late last week to a 14-year-old Palestinian from Bethlehem.
The successful organ transplant was performed at Hadassah University Medical Center in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem, where the teen is now recovering in the intensive care department.
As a medically compatible Israeli was not found by the Israel Transplant Coordination Center on the list of people waiting for a kidney, the decision was made to offer the organ to the Palestinian Authority. It could not be sent to a country abroad because there was little time to do so before the organ became unusable.
Shaare Zedek Medical Center’s head of pediatric nephrology, Prof. Ya’acov Frishberg, contacted Dr. Tarek Hindi, a nephrologist from Augusta Victoria Hospital in east Jerusalem and asked to identify a number of potential Palestinian recipients. They all went urgently to the hospital and gave blood for testing and typing. The boy was found to be the most suitable for the organ.
The organ transplantation coordination center, the Civil Administration and Hadassah’s organ transplant center worked around the clock to facilitate the donation and sending the teen to Jerusalem.
Hadassah nephrologist Dr. Aharon Bloch prepared him for the operation, which was performed by Dr. David Arnovitz of the surgical department and Prof. Hadar Merhav of the hospital’s transplant center. Dr. Valentin Levin was the anesthesiologist.
“The case is an example of the human brotherhood that is especially prominent in the field of transplants,” said Merhav. “In many cases, people of one religion or nationality willingly donate organs to another. At Hadassah, we are happy to do all we can to save lives,” he said.
The donor family said they did a good deed and did not want to get credit by publicizing their identity.
“We have had a special privilege to contribute to the creation of ‘a mosaic of peace,’” they said.
The recipient, Walid Daadua, previously received a kidney from his mother, but his body rejected it. For the last four years, he has been undergoing dialysis following kidney failure a few times a week and has been waiting for a donated organ.
A liver and the other kidney were transplanted at Rabin Medical Center-Beilinson Campus.