New Mental Health Center for Jerusalem’s Herzog Hospital 758x530.
(photo credit: KKL-JNF)
The Israel Medical Association, which represents most of the country’s physicians, demanded that the Treasury increase its allocations for public medicine before it decides to tax private medical institutions. “The public, like the IMA, believes that harming public medicine without providing a suitable solution for public medicine will only cause public medicine to deteriorate,” said IMA chairman Dr. Leonid Eidelman at a press conference on Sunday.
“The public system is starving for funds,” said Eidelman, who added that the 91 percent of the public cares about having reasonable access to surgery and other treatments via the private system if they are not accessible through the public system. “Money must be spent directly on public medicine. To shorten the queues, a billion additional shekels must be allocated to the public system every year,” said Eidelman.
The IMA commissioned a survey of 500 adults -- a representative sample of the general public -- from the Meida Shivuki polling organization about private medicine and accessibility to healthcare. The survey was carried out amid a public relations and political battle by private hospitals and clinics against the Treasury’s Arrangements Bill section on taxing private medical institutions.
The poll showed that 90% of those queried are in favor of private medical institutions for their allowing patients to chose their surgeon or consultant. The majority also said that restricting private medical institutions will increase pressure on public hospitals and make the queues even longer.
No comment was available at press time from the Health Ministry spokeswoman or Health Minister Yael German’s spokeswoman.