By Maayan Aviv and Shirel Daniel
When the stars align in philanthropy matchmaking, some of the most fruitful partnerships are born.
This month, ALYN Hospital, Israel’s only pediatric rehabilitation center, and Philadelphia International Medicine, a hub for 10 medical centers in the Philadelphia region, announced a trans-Atlantic partnership.
Though the partnership is still young, there are already many promising ideas to improve pediatric care. Our biggest goal, first and foremost, is to create connectivity between our two organizations and enhance medical collaboration across the globe.
The synergy between ALYN and PIM was brought to our attention by Philadelphia resident and American Friends of ALYN board member David Meron. He knew connecting our institutions would result in a revolutionary international step for pediatric medicine worldwide.
Our combined strengths will further a holistic approach to children’s health.
ALYN uses state-of-the-art technology and rehabilitation to help patients have lives that are as normal as possible outside of the hospital during their treatment. ALYN’s facilities include spaces dedicated to physical and speech therapy, hydrotherapy and virtual reality.
ALYNnovation, the hospital’s dedicated innovation space, brings together specialists, entrepreneurs, volunteers and research teams to develop assistive technology that is used by children across the world.
PIM serves as the international office for 10 renowned medical centers in Philadelphia and connects patients and physicians from around the world to the best specialists in PIM’s network. Nemours Children’s Health, a key hospital in PIM’s network, will be working closely with ALYN.
Nemours Children’s Health is one of the largest integrated pediatric health systems in the United States, with more than 1,650,000 annual patient encounters, and families from more than 50 countries seek the expertise of their physician experts each year. Nemours Children’s Health has a family-focused approach that looks at improving children’s health where it starts — at home, at school and in communities.
Together, these approaches ensure that treatment plans for children go beyond technology and medicine and consider how the treatment will play a role in their everyday lives.
To achieve these goals, we are already working on exchanging research, technology and strategies between physicians that we hope will elevate patient care at both ALYN and Nemours. Some of our main focuses of research and collaboration will include novel treatments for neuromuscular diseases, spina bifida, PANS, bone health, brain activity and transition planning for adults with childhood-onset disabilities.
Our first interorganizational meeting between experts, called a grand round, will allow specialists to confer on the best course of action for a complicated pediatric case. In these grand rounds, a physician will present a difficult case, and other physicians can help to create a treatment agenda, decide which facility is best suited for treatment and formulate a plan that would be most beneficial for the patient. The initial grand round will establish how we work together and create a space where our two organizations can continue to flourish as this partnership moves forward, fostering opportunities for new processes and thought.
Our two organizations discovered in each other kindred spirits who find joy and passion in making the world a better place for children facing challenges.
By combining ALYN’s innovation with PIM’s extensive scope, the ALYN-PIM Health Gateway Initiative provides opportunities for both organizations to advance their work while impacting pediatric care worldwide.
Through this partnership, our combined knowledge will thrive, further driving innovation, research and education that will benefit children around the globe. We hope that by creating a bigger pool of knowledge and experience, the ecosystem of pediatric special care will expand.
Less than one year after Meron introduced our institutions, we are proud to announce our partnership — PIM’s first official collaboration in Israel. While ALYN and PIM both advance medicine individually, together, our inventive technological and educational strengths can create a significant impact far beyond the scope of what we can do on our own.
At a time when medical innovation is needed more than ever, we are glad that we can be providing a guide for international pediatric cooperation.
Maayan Aviv is the executive director of American Friends of ALYN, the branch of ALYN Hospital dedicated to raising awareness of their work throughout the United States. Shirel Daniel is the manager of global outreach at Philadelphia International Medicine.