Success stories of Palestinian achievers from all over the world

Saleem Al-Hajj Yehya

Personal Info

  • Country of residence: British Virgin Islands
  • Gender: Male
  • Age: 0
  • Curriculum vitae :


Saleem Haj Yehya (1967) is a Palestinian physician and heart surgeon from the city of Taybeh, an experienced professor at the British University of Bristol, and a member of the Palestinian Higher Health Council. He held the position of Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at An-Najah National University and also the position of Executive Director of An-Najah National University Hospital. Currently, after leaving An-Najah University and its university hospital, Professor Haj Yahya occupies the position of Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Hebron University and is working on establishing a modern university hospital in it.

His upbringing and education
Saleem Haj Yehya was born in the city of Al-Taybeh in the occupied Palestinian territories in 1948. He received his basic and preparatory education in its schools. In his high school, he moved to a boarding school in the city of Nazareth. Then he completed his education, studying law, influenced by his father, until he moved after two years to study medicine at the University of The Israeli Technion, and after his graduation, he joined the residency program in the field of cardiothoracic surgery at Sheba Tel Hashomer Hospital; To be the youngest consultant in cardiothoracic surgery in Israel. In 2002, he joined International Cardiac Surgeon Professor Sir Magdi Yacoub at the Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals in London, and was appointed as a Research Fellow at the National Heart and Lung Institute, and later at the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Imperial College London.

His career and achievements
achievements in the United Kingdom
Haj Yehya played an important role at the Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals in developing the heart failure programme, the artificial heart programme, the lung transplantation programme, and organ donation. He also worked with leading British research groups, such as that of Professor Magdi Yacoub at the National Heart and Lung Institute at Imperial College London, In which he played a key role in applying scientific research that included creative medical innovations of scientific and surgical importance.

Professor Haj Yehya has engaged in research work, producing dozens of publications (more than 60 complete papers and a limited presentation, and this is only on the Research Gate website), which had an impact in the field of developing mechanical circulation globally, most of which were published in prominent scientific journals, and he worked on Supervising and implementing many research projects in the field of heart failure and mechanical support, in addition to his work as a senior advisor to the British Ministry of Health in organ donation and transplantation. He was later awarded a special and prestigious Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of England for those who have made an important contribution to the development of the field of cardiac surgery and service to humanity, and was subsequently awarded a Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow in honor of his work in the field of mechanical circulatory support and failed heart surgery and his contributions In improving the field of organ transplantation in Britain.

In addition, Professor Haj Yehya was the first heart surgeon in the world to transfer a beating human heart without stopping and freezing it in the traditional way, and he was the first surgeon in Britain and one of the first in the world to transfer and transplant a lung after the death of the clinical cycle (and not after the traditional clinical death), and the first heart surgeon to develop and publish Innovative surgical methods for implanting and removing the artificial heart without incision in the entire chest.

Haj Yehya is the only professor of cardiac surgery in Scotland, and the first heart surgeon in Britain to be appointed as a professor at two British universities (at the University of Glasgow in Scotland and a professor at the University of Bristol in England), simultaneously.

In 2010, as part of the efforts made by the Scottish government, in order to prepare for a popular referendum and improve the Scottish health care system and reduce dependence on the English system, especially with regard to referring patients to London, Professor Haj Yahya was attracted as Head of the Heart Transplant Department and the Scottish National Center for the Treatment of Heart Failure Heart, in order to lead a team of surgeons to establish and develop the artificial heart program, revive the heart transplant program, and develop the lung transplant program, thus becoming one of the youngest leading consultants in advanced programs within the National Health Service sector in Britain, as this was based on his reputation in the field of Heart and lung transplantation. And after Professor Haj Yehya established the artificial heart program in Scotland and after leading a team to revive the heart transplantation program, he made an important global contribution to the establishment of several advanced heart programs in addition to establishing different departments of artificial heart surgery around the world, and supervised the first implantation Artificial heart operations in several countries, the latest of which was Palestine. Professor Haj-Yahya also participated in the training of a large number of consultants from all over the world, including surgeons, cardiologists, anesthesiologists and others, in both London and Glasgow, and in other centers around the world for heart transplantation.

His return to his homeland, Palestine
And after spending half a decade as head of the heart transplantation program, and after performing the first successful artificial heart transplant in Glasgow, Scotland, and working for a period as a professor at the University of Glasgow, Haj Yahya decided to return to Palestine, due to his moral and national commitment to work to seize the opportunity to create a change in the system. Palestinian health. Where Haj Yahya preferred to return to Palestine to build a new generation of doctors based on medical ethics and human values; So he worked as the CEO and founder of An-Najah University Teaching Hospital; The first teaching university hospital in Palestine, and as a professor of cardiothoracic surgery, in addition to his work as director of heart surgery and transplantation and dean of the Faculty of Medicine. After he resigned from his post at Glasgow Golden Jubilee Hospital, Professor Haji Yahya was offered an honorary position at the hospital and the University of Glasgow, and held an honorary consultant position in cardiac transplantation and surgery at the Golden Jubilee Hospital.

A qualitative artificial heart transplant in Palestine
Hajj Yahya's qualitative operation to implant an artificial heart for an 18-year-old boy received a strong response and had an impact on the Palestinian people. It strengthened the people's confidence in the health system, especially since this operation was the first of its kind in Palestine. And when taking into account the difficult conditions that the occupied territories are going through and the Palestinian health care system is facing, such an achievement is considered a difficult task, and a major event in improving the health care system in Palestine. The work of Professor Haj Yahya had a wide resonance in the Palestinian national community and on the global scale, as the European, British and American media reported on this achievement, making Professor Haj Yahya a national medical model.

his relationship with his students
It is worth mentioning that Professor Haj Yahya has a strong influence on his students (in Palestine and Britain) as he personally supervises their work and progress, and he contributed to his outstanding students obtaining a number of training opportunities in world-renowned institutions in both Britain and the United States of America, in addition to that. To his supervision of the work of master's, doctoral and post-doctoral students, opening the doors of cooperation and partnership with important institutions with common interests to improve the medical field and develop research and scientific production.

His positions in Palestine and his management of An-Najah University Hospital
Salim Haj Yahya held the position of Dean of the College of Medicine and Health Sciences at An-Najah National University, in addition to the position of Executive Director of An-Najah National University Hospital during the period (2014-2019). artificial lung.

Professor Haj Yahya worked on building relationships at the global level, attracting qualified people, and strengthening cooperation and partnerships in order to improve the medical infrastructure in Palestine. As part of his leadership role as Executive Director of An-Najah University Hospital, Professor Haj-Yahya is responsible for leading a large team and heading up the management hierarchy in the development of comprehensive education at the university hospital as well as the development of tertiary care, with an annual budget of US$50 million. His role has contributed to making An-Najah National University Hospital a leading Palestinian health institution in both the field of advanced medical care in comprehensive health care and tertiary health care, and in the field of medical education and research. His role included attracting members of the medical staff at the international level, developing the infrastructure, in addition to developing the system, rules and laws, developing strategies and strengthening relations at the international level. Despite this, Professor Haj Yahya continued to perform operations, thus enabling him to create a modern institution concerned with the heart, responsible for the program of heart surgery and transplantation, mechanical circulatory support, and intractable heart diseases.

His charitable work
Professor Haj Yahya is not only considered a surgeon, but he also uses his positions in order to encourage charitable work in the field of continuing medical education and in order to promote the values and ethics of future generations of doctors and workers in the health professions, especially as the founder and president of the Children's Heart Foundation of Palestine since 2010. The work of this charitable organization focuses on initiating and supporting the development of Palestinian services specialized in the diagnosis and management of heart diseases in children in particular, and other diseases in children in general. He also worked for 10 years as an executive member of the Board of Trustees of the Al-Quds Charitable Foundation in Britain to support medical schools in Palestine, which works to support the development of medical schools in Jerusalem in particular and in Palestine in general. Professor Haj Yahya feels very proud of his charitable activities, especially since he has so far collected nearly $4 million for charitable purposes.

role as an influencer
The results of a survey conducted by the most popular websites in the Arab world at the end of 2016 indicated that Professor Salim Haj Yahya is considered the most influential Palestinian, scientific and non-political figure.

He also established several departments for heart transplantation and the artificial heart in different parts of the world, including the United Kingdom, Turkey, Greece and a number of Arab Gulf countries. In addition, he recorded a large number of heart transplant operations that qualified him to be the director of the Mechanical Circulation Support Unit and artificial heart implantation in one. One of the most important heart hospitals in Britain.


Achievements and Awards

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