Histadrut chair Ofer Eini at Labor Court_311.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Members of Kupat Holim Meuhedet – the country’s third-largest health fund – will
not be able to undergo blood tests or give urine and other samples at community
clinics starting on Thursday.
Only in emergency cases will blood be
taken, and phones will not be answered, as employees apply sanctions.
4,000 Meuhedet workers around the country are protesting what they call “a
stalemate in negotiations and the management’s and the Treasury’s
Emergency cases include fertility, oncology and other
urgent patients, the union said.
In addition, workers will not market to
bring in new customers or go to hearings of workers as part of their
Histadrut labor federation official Arnon Bar-David said the
Treasury refuses to address the union’s complaints. The federation said it
supports the workers fully.
Meuhedet has been in a crisis for three
years, since the State Comptroller’s Office wrote a damning report on corruption
by senior administrators that caused the dismissal and resignation of most of
them. The director-general who took over after the scandal, Prof. Asher
Elhayani, was dismissed by the board of directors without any formal accusations
But service for members has remained on a high level, with
few complaints about the staffers.
Union chief Shela Ventura said the
workers were sorry to cause trouble for members and always want to give the best
service, but were are applying sanctions before Yom Kippur and Succot because
“we had no choice. We call on the Treasury and health fund management to take
responsibility and stop abandoning the staffers.”