A brilliant pediatrician used to working in difficult circumstances, Anna Braude Heller struggled to keep children’s hospitals open through both WWI and WWII. Heller studied medicine in Zurich before finishing her studies in Berlin in 1912. She established the Wlodzimierz Medem Children’s Sanatorium in Otwock, Poland before returning in 1913 to Warsaw, where she worked at the Berson and Bauman Children’s Hospital for Jewish children. She also helped found the Children’s Friends Society in 1916, which offered medical and psychological aid to children throughout the war. When Berson and Bauman closed due to lack of funds during WWI, she helped raise money, and when it reopened in 1930 she became its chief physician and a member of its board. As war gripped Poland once again during WWII, the hospital was overrun with casualties, and when a bombing started a fire, Heller evacuated 100 children to nearby apartments and upheld standards of care despite the chaos and overcrowding. As a member of the Health Council of the Judenrat, she reported on the effects of starvation, overcrowding, and violence on Jewish children, and tried to block the children’s deportation to concentration camps. Although she evaded a mass deportation in 1943, she was killed shortly afterwards when German soldiers raided the Warsaw Ghetto.
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Jewish Women's Archive. "Anna Braude Heller." (Viewed on June 17, 2021) <https://jwa.org/people/heller-anna>.