Center for Medicine after the Holocaust to Hold Remembrance Ceremony for Holocaust Victims of Euthanasia at Hadamar and Auschwitz

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CMATH to honor Holocaust victims at euthanasia center and concentration camp during biennial trip for historians, educators, physicians, religious and medical ethics leaders.

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We remember the central and indispensable role that medical professionals played in the Holocaust to remind doctors of the seriousness of the ethical decisions they make today.

As part of the nationwide Days of Remembrance effort led by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum today to honor the victims of the Holocaust and Nazi persecution, Center for Medicine after the Holocaust (CMATH) announced that it will hold remembrance ceremonies at Hadamar and Auschwitz on its CMATH Champions trip to Germany and Poland next week.

The Fourth Biennial CMATH Champions Trip to Germany and Poland will be held April 30 to May 7, 2017. Attendees will include world renowned bioethicists, academic physicians, religious leaders, university professors, and historians. A moment of silence and a brief remembrance ceremony will be held at Hadamar Euthanasia Centre on May 2 and at Auschwitz on May 4.

“Through our Days of Remembrance event, CMATH seeks both to commemorate this tragic history and to reflect on the lessons it holds for our lives today,” said CMATH Executive Director Sheldon Rubenfeld, M.D. “We remember the central and indispensable role that medical professionals played in the Holocaust to remind doctors of the seriousness of the ethical decisions they make today. Only with historical perspective can we prevent such a tragedy from ever happening again.”

The United States Congress established the Days of Remembrance as the nation’s annual commemoration of the Holocaust, with Holocaust Remembrance Day falling on the 27th day of Nisan on the Hebrew calendar. In Hebrew, Holocaust Remembrance Day is called Yom Hashoah.

While the official Week of Remembrance – a week during which state and local governments, military bases, workplaces, schools, religious organizations, and civic centers host observances for their communities – is held the week prior to Holocaust Remembrance Day, which is April 24 this year, CMATH chose to wait and honor euthanasia victims of the Holocaust at the actual sites where many victims perished.

The psychiatric hospital in Hadamar, Germany was one of six T4 euthanasia centers where 70,000 “lives not worth living – those with mental and physical disabilities – were gassed and cremated as part of Germany’s eugenics program. It is estimated that four-and-a-half million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust in gas chambers modeled after the T4 program at multiple concentration camps, especially Auschwitz, one of the largest extermination sites in occupied Europe.

The Holocaust was the state-sponsored, systematic persecution and annihilation of European Jewry by Nazi Germany and its collaborators between 1933 and 1945. Jews were the primary victims—six million were murdered; Roma and Sinti (Gypsies), people with mental and physical disabilities, and Poles were also targeted for death for eugenic, racial, ethnic, or national reasons. Millions more, including homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Soviet prisoners of war, and political dissidents, also suffered grievous oppression and death under Nazi Germany.

To learn more about the CMATH Champions trip to Germany and Poland, visit To learn more about Days of Remembrance, including the national ceremony in the US Capitol Rotunda and a map of remembrance events around the country, visit the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s website at

Center for Medicine after the Holocaust (CMATH) provides forums, content and curricula for medical students, medical professionals and educators to learn about medicine and the Holocaust and how to apply that history to contemporary practice and research. To learn more about CMATH, visit or follow us on Facebook or Twitter @medafterhc.

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