About Us

WHAT IS THE MAIMONIDES INSTITUTE FOR MEDICINE, ETHICS AND THE HOLOCAUST (MIMEH)?


Medical experimentation room at Auschwitz. © Jack Hazut.
No reproduction allowed without written permission from MIMEH and Jack Hazut.
MIMEH is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization that provides educational programming targeted towards healthcare professionals concerning the ways in which the power of medicine and the promise of scientific progress were used during the Holocaust to subvert the basic human rights of those deemed inferior in an attempt to improve the future of society. Our mission is to explore the ethical implications of the medical transgressions that took place during the Holocaust for modern scientific theory, medical practice, healthcare policy, and human rights endeavors.

We plan to achieve these goals through the establishment of an enduring organization that combines online and physically based programming. Offering free online web conferences to physicians, nurses, and pharmacists that can be accessed at a time and place that is convenient for people at any stage of their career is a unique, revolutionary approach that allows for the introduction of this topic to a generation that may not otherwise have the time or ability to study the subject. Our flexible approach combines traditional educational models with new, innovative techniques that utilize the increasing presence of digital media in modern society to reach a wide array of healthcare practitioners, bioethicists, policy makers, and future leaders.

Millions of people were killed in the name of scientific progress in Nazi Germany. We at MIMEH believe it is our responsibility to both those who perished and those whose lives were changed irrevocably to ensure that their suffering ultimately leads to the proliferation of a Righteous Medicine that places the dignity of the individual above all else.








Gypsy Victim of Dachau Medical Experiment. National Archives;
Shoah/Holocaust; US Holocaust Memorial Museum
Why do we need MIMEH?

To say that the Holocaust was an instance of "medicine gone mad" is to ignore the moral beliefs that allowed those sworn to the Hippocratic tenet of healing to become killers. The significance of fostering a personal and professional ethos that values the protection of human rights and the central principles of bioethics first and foremost cannot be overstated. Exploring the experiences of medicine preceding and during the Holocaust can help inform current and future medical policymakers and practitioners. Using this singular example of medically sanctioned genocide as a foundation for the development of moral decision making emphasizes the relevance of "reflecting on the past to protect the future" by instilling the absolute necessity of putting human life and dignity ahead of scientific progress and political expediency.







Our Vision

We began with a simple question: how can we reflect upon the past to protect the future? In the spirit of using historical lessons to inform contemporary practice, we looked to Maimonides, the 12th century physician, rabbi, philosopher and founding father of Jewish medical ethics for inspiration. Maimonides stated, "May I never see in the patient anything but a fellow creature in pain." During the Holocaust, medical professionals did not see their patients as fellow human beings. Instead, they viewed them as a means to an end to be manipulated by the scientific theories and medical advances of the time in an attempt to create a better society. Thus, the idea of returning to Maimonides and instilling in medical professionals a moral ethos that emphasizes the importance of individual dignity and the absolute necessity of putting human life ahead of scientific progress became our driving force.

In the spring of 2015, Dr. Stacy Gallin organized a Conference on Medicine, Bioethics, and the Holocaust, a world class event that brought together internationally renowned healthcare professionals, scholars, bioethicists, and leaders in the field with interested members of the community to begin a dialogue on the importance of creating enduring programs to ensure that this type of medically sanctioned genocide and abuse of human rights never happens again. Building off of the success of this conference, the Maimonides Institute for Medicine, Ethics and the Holocaust was founded.

Agenda for Our First Year:

Three-Year Plan

Five-Year Plan









Some of the issues facing society today include:
  • Hierarchical classifications based on race, religion, ethnicity, gender, and socioeconomic status continue to exist. The threat of using dehumanization and medicalization to abuse vulnerable members of the population based on these classifications remains significant.

  • Issues of equity, access to care, mental health services, and the treatment of vulnerable populations are a contentious part of our national dialogue.

  • Developments in genomics have created a new frontier for both medical progress and discrimination. Advances in reproductive medicine and neonatology have the potential to render current legal definitions of life obsolescent.

  • Policies regarding physician-assisted suicide, euthanasia, and the participation of the medical profession in the death penalty and enhanced interrogation techniques have triggered passionate public debates over whether those dedicated to healing should be allowed to kill.

  • Technological advances have extended our expected life span, resulting in further financial strains on an already under-funded and inequitably distributed national health budget and raising questions regarding the relative value of various stages of human life. Economically motivated solutions run the risk of impairing the personal doctor-patient relationship upon which ethical medical practice is based.

  • Concerns about regulating developments in the field of medical science have shaped public healthcare policy and politicized medicine in an unprecedented manner.
How we reconcile ethical and humanitarian concerns with medical-scientific advances and political-economic imperatives will determine our future; however in order to accurately understand these issues we must reflect upon our past. The Maimonides Institute for Medicine Ethics and the Holocaust is fully committed to the promotion of moral decision making as the predominant method for balancing the importance of scientific progress with the need to protect the sanctity of all human life.








Stacy Gallin presents at "The Conference
on Medicine, Bioethics and the Holocaust"
organized by MIMEH.
Goals and Objectives
  • Examine the unique confluence of events that took place in Germany in the early twentieth century that resulted in the merger of politics, science, and medicine in order to help better understand the rationale behind eugenics and Nazi racial hygiene policy
  • Use the Holocaust as the historical framework to explore current human rights abuses in vulnerable populations and examine the ways in which minority cultures have been subjected to unethical medical practices under the guise of scientific progress
  • Provide the tools for educating people regarding the continuing relevance of medicine, ethics, and the Holocaust for current medical practice, healthcare policy, and human rights endeavors in the United States and abroad
  • Develop and instill a personal and professional ethos within the medical profession that values the dignity of human life above the importance of scientific progress
  • Honor the victims of Nazi medicine by ensuring that the study of the Holocaust and its moral legacy is not forgotten








Academic Programming and Medical Education
  • Create an academic clearinghouse for research and programming related to medicine, ethics and the Holocaust
  • Establish a consortium of undergraduate, graduate, and medical institutions dedicated to educating future generations regarding the importance of medicine, ethics, and the Holocaust
  • Present regularly scheduled webinars on numerous topics within the field from both students and recognized scholars
  • Develop a standardized online curriculum on medicine, ethics, and the Holocaust that can be offered at various international institutions
  • Provide Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits for various courses and programs offered at local hospitals and universities and online
  • Establish a course on medicine, ethics, and the Holocaust as a requirement for graduate medical education and continuing medical education


The Conference on Medicine, Bioethics, and the Holocaust brought together internationally renowned scholars for a
panel discussion on the lasting legacy of the Holocaust for medicine, ethics, healthcare policy, and human
rights endeavors. Participants included (left to right): Michael Berenbaum, Ph.D.; Tessa Chelouche, M.D.;
Patricia Heberer-Rice, Ph.D.; Arthur L. Caplan, Ph.D.; Allen Menkin, M.D.; Stacy Perlstein Gallin, D.M.H.;
Jonathan Rose, Ph.D; Allen Keller, M.D.; and Peter Nelson, MA. Photo courtesy of Jordan Cheesman.








Dr. Allen Menkin, MIMEH Co-Founder; Sandra O. Gold, MS, Ed, Senior Counselor to
the President and Founder, The Arnold P. Gold Foundation; and Stacy Gallin, DMH,
MIMEH Co-Founder at The Gold Thread Gala: Weaving Science and the Human Side
of Healthcare on November 23, 2015 in NYC.
Community Outreach
  • Record testimony of victims of medical experimentation to preserve their stories and utilize these narratives as part of educational programming
  • Organize and host conferences, colloquia, and symposia on medicine, ethics and the Holocaust
  • Facilitate Grand Rounds at local hospitals
  • Offer presentations on medicine, ethics and the Holocaust to local houses of worship, schools, community associations, and other interested organizations
  • Collaborate with secondary school educators to integrate this topic into educational curriculum as a means for the promotion of moral decision-making