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1243 – Brachos and Tefillos – (Klal 65 Siman 1) – Brachos and Tefillos Pratiyos – 1 – Bakasha for Refuah Before Procedures and Medications

D'var Halacha
D'var Halacha
1243 - Brachos and Tefillos - (Klal 65 Siman 1) - Brachos and Tefillos Pratiyos - 1 - Bakasha for Refuah Before Procedures and Medications

We are beginning Klal 65, which discusses various tefillos and bakashos.  

The Chayei Adam begins with bloodletting. People assumed that there are various liquids and fluids in the body, some of which caused illness. By removing those liquids from the body, a person could be healed. Before beginning this procedure, one should recite a bakasha. Truthfully, in anything which a person does which is important and significant to them, it is most logical that they ask Hashem for help that it should be successful. 

The bakasha is יהי רצון ה’ אלהי שיהיה עסק זה לי לרפואה. כי רופא חנם אתה

The Chayei Adam extends this bakasha, and writes that a person should recite it before taking any medicine.

 The Chayei Adam writes to add the phrase כי רופא חנם אתה to the bakasha. Chazal added this phrase to the bakasha because Hashem grants us a refuah without charging, as opposed to a doctor of flesh and blood who does charge. We obviously would not pay Hashem money; rather, the free service refers to not losing any zechusim accumulated through our torah and mitzvos..

A person must understand that a refuah comes because Hashem wills it to be so, not because of the specific item consumed or task performed. Through the bakasha, a person is reminded that the source of healing is not the eisek (medium), but Hashem, and this reminder will hopefully be the catalyst for them to daven. 

After bloodletting, the Chayei Adam writes that one should recite the bracha baruch rofeh cholim, with Hashem’s name. The Gemara brings down this bracha in a few places without mentioning Hashem’s name, but the rishonim assume that the Gemara means to include recitation of Hashem’s name. However, the Mishnah Berurah writes that after bloodletting, one should not recite Hashem’s name. Alternatively, even if the full bracha should be recited after bloodletting, when extending this bracha to other procedures, one certainly does not recite Hashem’s name 

There is a beautiful thought shared in the name of the Brisker Rov related to this point. We know that the Rambam holds that, mideoraysa, a person only has to daven once a day. The fact that we daven three times a day is the result of a mitzvah derabanan. The Ramban disagrees, and holds there is no mitzvah deoraysa to daven any of the three tefillos, but all three are derabanan. Rather, but the mitzvah deoraysa is to daven at a time of a tzarah. The Rambam agrees that davening at a time of tzarah is deoraysa, and holds that one tefillah a day is also deoraysa. 

The Brisker Rav pointed out that taking medication or doing a procedure is certainly a time of tzara. Thus, while shemoneh esrei may be derabanan (in some cases according to both opinions), reciting this yehi ratzon is a mitzvah deoraysa according to both. Similarly, the tefillos we mentioned in the previous klal, such as before entering a dangerous city, are also deoraysa, because they are coming at a time of tzarah.


Before any procedure, one should recite הי רצון ה’ אלהי שיהיה עסק זה לי לרפואה. כי רופא חנם אתה. Following the procedure, they should recite baruch rofeh cholim, without the name of Hashem. This bakasha fulfils the mitzvah deoraysa of tefillah.


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