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Promoting Jewish Medical Awareness in Northern Virginia

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Rabbi Leibel Fajnland

The Rohr Jewish Learning Institute (JLI) will present a program on ethics, “Life in the Balance: Jewish Perspectives on Everyday Medical Dilemmas,” as part of the institute’s new six-session Fall 2013 course that will begin during the week of Oct. 27.

Rabbi Leibel Fajnland of Chabad of Northern Virginia will conduct the six course sessions from 7:30-9 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 28 in Fairfax and Tuesday, Oct. 29 in Herndon.

“Nowadays, at some point or another, everyone faces an extremely difficult medical decision that they aren’t equipped to handle,” said Rabbi Zalman Abraham of JLI’s headquarters in Brooklyn, N.Y. “Our objective with this course is to acquaint the public with fascinating Jewish perspectives on some of the most cutting-edge dilemmas in medical ethics.”

In Life in the Balance, participants will ponder ethical questions about a range of topics ranging from end of life issues to preventive measures and respect due to the body after death. Questions include: Must we prolong life at the expense of immense suffering? Should we legalize compensation for organs to save the lives of those on the transplant list? And where do we draw the line between keen vigilance to safeguard one’s health and pointless panic? The course will also explore ethical ramifications of fascinating new technologies such as digital autopsies, and uterine transplants.

“These important issues are critical to so many people’s lives yet they are rarely discussed nowadays,” said Rabbi Fajnland, the local JLI instructor in Northern Virginia. “This is a unique opportunity that will benefit the wider community and we invite everyone to attend.”

Like all JLI programs, Life in the Balance is designed to appeal to people at all levels of Jewish knowledge, including those without any prior experience or background in Jewish learning. The course is accredited to offer AMA PRA Category 1 CME credits for medical professionals, CLE credits for attorneys in most states, and AGD PACE credits for dentists. All JLI courses are open to the public, and attendees need not be affiliated with a particular synagogue, temple, or other house of worship.

Interested students may call 703-476-1829 or visit www.myJLI.com for registration and other course-related information.