Jewish Medical Assistance
New organization provides five, confidential medical education and consultation.
AMOD provides, as well as halachic
(Jewish law) guidance on questions
having to do with medical bioethics
and other medical topics of Jewish
concern. These would include repro-
duction and end-of-life issues.
A call to the AMOD hotline is
answered by a physician volunteer,
who determines which health profes-
to offer a broad base of many medical
services to Detroit's Jewish community.
Dr. Aaron Allen, an AMOD founder
and executive board member, is a radi-
re're already getting lots of
ation oncologist at the University of
calls," said Dr. Gabriel
Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor. He
Sosne, referring to the
foresees expanding AMOD's services to
new AMOD medical
include, among other things, an emer-
hotline. The hotline is the first project
gency medical equipment gMach (free
of AMOD (pronounced ah-mode,
loan system), similar to
Hebrew for "stand up"), a
Israel's Yad Sarah organiza-
newly formed organization
tion; CPR training for corn-.
offering free, confidential
munity members; and coun-
medical counseling, advice
seling in conjunction with
Comprised of local physi-
cians, rabbis and other volun-
"We've currently estab-
teers, the organization hopes
lished a liaison relationship
to become a caring medical
with Jewish Family Service,
information resource for the
which we use as a resource
metro Detroit Jewish commu-
for referrals," Dr. Allen said..
Other plans for AMOD
"We've gotten calls for refer-
include participating at
rals and calls asking to explain
health fairs, offering cancer
medical conditions," said Dr.
screening and blood-pressure
Sosne, an ophthalmologist at
the Kresge Eye Institute and
"We hope to do commu-
assistant professor of anatomy
and cell biology at Wayne
events, like a forum on hor-
State University, both in
mone replacement therapy,
Detroit. He is a founding
discussing the risks and ben-
member on the AMOD exec-
efits, and what the latest
studies show," Dr. Sosne
The organization is needed
because "the majority of peo-
Dr. Aaron Allen, an AMOD founder.
Another project the organ-
ple don't have access to physi-
ization wants to undertake is
cians," Dr. Sosne said, adding
placing emergency medical
that even those under a doc-
sional or rabbi is best suited to assist
equipment, such as heart defibrillators
tor's care are able to turn AMOD for
and oxygen, in all synagogues and
the caller. The call is then returned by
an extra professional consultation if -
the selected AMOD volunteer. Each
offices of Jewish organizations, includ-
uncertain about treatment options.
call is kept strictly confidential.
ing the Jewish Community Center of
"Sometimes, patients feel intimidat-
AMOD does not provide direct
Metropolitan Detroit buildings in
ed by their doctors, or feel too rushed
medical care, physical examinations,
West Bloomfield and Oak Park.
or overwhelmed," said Dr. Sosne.
prescriptions or emergency triage. In
AMOD is modeled, in part, after
AMOD's volunteer staff of physi-
case of emergency, 911 should be
other volunteer medical organizations
cians can help explain medical condi-
called or the patient should go to the
that serve Jewish communities around
tions and procedures to such patients
the world. Among them are ECHO, a
nearest emergency room.
and their family members.
Lawyer Michael Eizelman, the orga-
medical-referral organization based in
"A patient's doctor might prescribe a
New York, and Ezer L'Marpeh, a med-
nization's volunteer legal consultant,
course of treatment and they (the
. ical-support organization in Israel.
explained that Michigan laws govern-
patients) just want to bounce it off
AMOD's distinction is that it is the
ing non-profit organizations protect
another doctor," said Dr. Sosne.
AMOD volunteers from civil liability.
only such organization to use physi-
AMOD board members say taking
cians, rather than lay volunteers.
Nonetheless, AMOD will include an
requests for referrals to specialists is a
"Right now, we are funded only by
major function of the organization.
will be reviewed to make sure they
private contributions," said Dr. Allen.
"Everyone is connected to others in
were handled properly and confiden-
"We're applying for pilot-project grants
their field; we all network," said Dr.
from the local Sinai Guild and the
tiality is maintained.
Sosne. "We can make a simple phone
AMOD's board members are hoping Jewish Fund."
call and help expedite things."
More than 250 learned about
their fledgling organization will be able
Patient advocacy is another service
Special to the Jewish News
AMOD recently at its first informa-
tional meeting at the Jewish
Community Center in Oak Park. Due
to logistics, the July 15 meeting intro-
duced AMOD only to the Orthodox
Jewish community. An earlier gather-
ing enlisted the services of local
Orthodox medical professionals; about
"Health issues cross the lines of the
political and religious spectrum," Dr.
Sosne said. "AMOD can help facilitate
a sense of Jewish community."
"We're very grassroots right now,"
Dr. Allen said. "We're looking for com-
munity members and doctors to call to
volunteer their time. AMOD has
tremendous potential to help the entire
The AMOD hotline is open to the
Jewish community and staffed 24 hours a
day, except for Shabbat and Jewish holi-
days. For confidential medical counsel-
ing, advice and education, call the hot-
line, (248) 225-2716
The Rev:Jesse Jackson has worked
for peace around the world, and has
sometimes been an effective media-
tor in moving conflicts toward reso-
lution. Unfortunately, his current
trip to the Middle East has taken
some wrong turns.
As the Rev. Jackson incorrectly
describes Palestinian terror and
Israel's response to halt that terror as
Ca cycle of retaliatory violence,",and
schedules a meeting with Sheik
Yassin of the terrorist Hamas group,
Israelis are shaken this week from a
number of attacks and warnings of
further attacks. (Israeli Radio report-
ed July 31 that the Rev. Jackson can-
celed the meeting after hearing
Hamas had claimed responsibility
for the Hebrew University bombing
earlier that day.)
Allan Gale, Jewish Community
Council ofMetropolitan Detroit