Pediatric Cardiac Program

Healing Hearts In Palestine

The “Healing Hearts” Program in Palestine started in 1998, when we brought an American team to Makassed Hospital in East Jerusalem to operate on babies born with heart defects. Since then, thousands of volunteer doctors and nurses from all over the work have volunteered their time and expert skills to save the lives of thousands of babies in Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem, as well as to build a program that will develop sustainability and independent care for the hundreds of children born each year in Palestine with congenital heart disease. Our goal is to develop diagnostic, surgical and post-operative care for these children, as well as to train local staff and provide infrastructural support.

Dr. Metras Artwork for PCRF
Dr. Metras Artwork for PCRF

Dr. Dominique Metras is a world-renowned pediatric cardiac surgeon. He was the first chief and creator of cardiac surgery in Abidjan (Ivory Coast ), in Africa, in cooperation with the University French system, from 1976 to 1984.   In 1984, he returned to Marseille (France) to run the only unit of pediatric cardiac surgery, and continued the activity with Terre des Hommes and also another French NGO (Enfants du Monde, Chaine de l'Espoir, La Ribambelle...) operating on children from Africa and other places.

In 1997 Dr. Metras started his first medical mission, bringing in medical teams (anesthesiologists, perfusionists, cardiologists, nurses) working for Chaine de l'Espoir, Surgeons of Hope, PCRF, and also another Swiss NGO for Mauritius Island. He worked in different countries; Iraq (5 missions with governmental support), Mozambique, Cameroon, Senegal (three times), Nicaragua 6 times (for Surgeons of Hope), and Mauritius Island. He also worked in several other countries for cooperation support, surgery, and teaching: Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, India, Iran, Dominican Republic. His work extended to Palestine with his first two missions at Makassed, they were supported by the French Consulate, and subsequently by PCRF. Dr. Metras is auctioning off three pieces of his watercolor artwork in support of the PCRF Healing Hearts Program. This will enable PCRF to continue its medical missions throughout the Levant, helping children get the care they could not otherwise receive locally. Learn more about the Healing Hearts program here:

The first two pieces below represent two views in Jericho and Ramallah, just before the main checkpoint to Jerusalem. The second two pieces are in Gaza. The artwork size is: 14X20 

For inquiries or to purchase, please email: [email protected]

The PCRF currently is supporting two programs in Palestine to build up local services and to provide life-saving surgery for sick children with heart defects.


While our first missions to Ramallah Hospital were from 1999-2002, we re engaged the PA Ministry of Health in building a department in the Bahraini Hospital in 2015. PCRF is currently supporting the training of doctors and nurses, the building of infrastructure, including a pediatric intensive care unit, surgery for children with heart defects through the sponsorship of medical missions to the Palestine Medical Complex in Ramallah.

Meet the Consultants to Make This Project Work

International Palestinian Cardiac Relief Organization (IPCRO)

In April, 2004 the University of Ghent in Belgium hosted the first meeting for dozens of volunteer doctors and nurses from all over the world to plan for the long-term building and support for a pediatric cardiac surgery program in Palestine. Led by IPCRO’s first president – Professor Guido Van Nooten – IPCRO has since evolved into the main consulting partner of the PCRF, advising on missions, patient care, ICU protocols, infrastructural support and development. The goal of IPCRO is to build up services so that eventually these children can be treated in the PA MOH and not be transferred abroad for expensive and difficult care.

Successful Stories

Here are some of the children who we have helped to treat over the years

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