Prof. Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri

Prof. Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri was born on June 7, 1933, in Mitrovica in a generous and education-oriented family. He completed primary school in his hometown and finished high school in Prishtina. He studied at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Skopje, where he graduated in November 1959.

Prof. Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri is one of the most prominent personalities of Albanian medicine. In general, the successes of medicine in Mitrovica and Kosova, and especially in the field of surgery, are related to his name. He was one of the founders and the first Albanian teachers at the Medical High School in Mitrovica since the establishment of teaching classes in the Albanian language. The middle and senior staff is a product of his commitment and professional work.

On November 7, 1964, he completed his specialization in General Surgery in Belgrade. He is the first Albanian surgeon in the former Yugoslavia. As a specialist in general surgery, in 1968, he was the first Albanian named as a chief of a medical ward at the Mitrovica General Hospital, being as such the first and only one in any hospital in Kosova.

In the school year of 1963/64, when the first Albanian language class was opened at the High School of Nursing, Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri was also named a teacher, where he taught several professional subjects: Anatomy, Physiology, Pathology, Pathophysiology, Internal, Surgery. He worked for several years in this secondary educational institution.

Due to his unparalleled will and desire for further professional training in Thoracic Surgery, he went for a new specialist education in Kamenica, Srem, where during the years 1968-1970 he worked with eminent professors of the former Yugoslavia: Prof. Dr. Ivan Fajgel, Doc. Ervin Ginsberg et al. It is worth mentioning that in the hospital of Kamenica of Srem, Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri was the first Albanian to have a successful open-heart operation. He continued his professional training in the same field at the Military Academy – VMA in Belgrade with the well-known Academician Prof. Dr. Isidor Papa. On September 26, 1972, he completed his second specialization, that of Thoracic Surgery, and became the First Albanian Surgeon in the field of Thoracic Surgery in the former Yugoslavia.

In 1970 he was elected a lecturer at the Faculty of Medicine in Prishtina and is one of the founders of the University of Prishtina-Faculty of Medicine.

In 1973, he was named the director of the Mitrovica Regional Hospital. As was mentioned above, since the post-war period (1945), he was the first Albanian director in a health institution. In 1973, when he took over the leadership of this hospital, eight Serbs and one Albanian were employed. Thus, from ’73 to 1980, when he was the director of the Mitrovica Hospital, due to his unparalleled commitment, this structure of employment changed, so the number of Albanian workers in this institution (doctors, nurses, etc.) increased significantly. During this time, eight Albanian health workers and one Serb health worker were employed. During his time at the helm of Mitrovica Hospital, some Serb doctors left Mitrovica for Belgrade and elsewhere. For this “escape” Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri was blamed and accused, therefore various newspapers of that time, such as: “Vecernje Novosti”, “Politika”, “Danas” etc. published tendentious articles, aiming to denounce and discredit the Albanian doctor, who had established order and worked with dedication and professionalism for the advancement of this health institution. During this period, Dr. Sami created the first constellation of Albanian surgeons who graduated from the Faculty of Medicine in Prishtina,  whom he trained professionally.

During the 1981 war protests, Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri was at the highest level of duty. He went to even the most remote villages to help the wounded. For this reason, he was expelled from the ranks of LKJ. At the time of preparation for his imprisonment, some Mitrovica municipal leaders suggested that he leaves the leadership of Mitrovica hospital and moves to the UCCK Thoracic Surgery Clinic in Pristina, where he also worked full time as a teacher of Surgery at the Faculty of Medicine. During the time he worked as a surgeon and lecturer, he published over 45 professional-scientific papers in the country and in the world, he represented Kosova in surgery congresses at an international level with scientific subjects in the field of general and thoracic surgery, such as: in Moscow, Paris, San Francisco, Beijing, Tokyo, Amsterdam, etc.

In 1989, Dr. Sami Haxhibeqiri was one of the signatories of the petition of 215 Kosova Albanian intellectuals. On August 11, 1990, he was fired as the first employee of the UCC in Prishtina. He was in the position of deputy director of the Surgical Clinic.

During the period he worked at the Medical High School in Mitrovica, hundreds of graduates (nurses and midwives) graduated, while during his work as a Professor at the Faculty of Medicine in Prishtina, 1127 students, respectively doctors, passed the exam in the subject of surgery. As a teacher at the Medical High School in Mitrovica and at the Faculty of Medicine in Prishtina for so many years, he has left an indelible and very deep mark. Many successes in these institutions are associated with his name.

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