Abigail Klein Leichman
January 12, 2023

Dr. Abdulla Watad, 35, from the Israeli Arab village of Jatt, has become the youngest Israeli physician to receive a full professorship in the Tel Aviv University Faculty of Medicine.

This title is normally earned by much older physicians.

Watad is a senior rheumatologist and deputy director of the Internal Medicine B ward at Sheba Medical Center in Ramat Gan. He has co-authored about 200 scientific publications.

In the video below, Watad expresses appreciation to his mentors at Sheba, Prof. Howard Amital, director of Internal Medicine B and of Sheba’s Institute for Autoimmune Diseases; and Prof. Yehuda Shoenfeld, senior physician at the Institute of Autoimmune Diseases.

Watad graduated from an Italian medical school and began working at Sheba in 2013. In 2018, he did a research fellowship at the University of Leeds.

“Being an Arab is always something really interesting in Israel because we would like to be involved in the daily work and research and also treating patients. And to be fair, at Sheba, I never felt there is discrimination between Arab or non-Arab,” he said.

“To be successful you need four things: desire, setting a goal, hard work and a mentor who believes in you,” Watad continued. “A person should believe in himself and know that he can go far.”

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