Health Ministry report: Inequality in medical services has narrowed

Jewish men and women and Arab women enjoyed a rise in longevity, while that of Arab men declined from an average 78 years in 2013 to 76.9 years in 2014.

December 28, 2015 05:42
1 minute read.

Doctor [Illustrative]. (photo credit: INGIMAGE)


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In a Health Ministry report on inequality in health services to be presented at a conference in Ganei Tikva on Monday, Ramat Gan is the largest city with its residents having the highest longevity and Bat Yam with the shortest.

The gaps in health levels remain significant, according to the report, which was written and edited by Dr. Emma Aberbuch and Shlomit Avni.

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Jewish men and women and Arab women enjoyed a rise in longevity, while that of Arab men declined from an average 78 years in 2013 to 76.9 years in 2014.

Infant mortality, meanwhile, declined in the Jewish and Arab sectors during this period.

The largest gap of infant mortality between Jews and Arabs was in the southern district – 2.9 deaths per 1,000 live births among Jews compared to 11 deaths among Arabs (mostly Beduin).

The gap between Jewish and Arab men in heart attacks and hypertension (high blood pressure) declined between 1998 and 2013 (and in fact, in high blood pressure, the gap was eliminated. But Arab men were more likely to suffer a heart attack than their Jewish counterparts (apparently due to the continuing high smoking rate among Arab men).

The rate of medical professionals in most specialties in the North and South has improved compared to the higher rates in the center of the country, but Tel Aviv continues to have the most doctors per capita than anywhere else in the country.

The rate of nurses is highest, however, in Haifa, followed by Tel Aviv, with the lowest rate in the southern district.

The shortage of medical services from clinics to pharmacies and urgent-care centers in small settlements in the periphery, not surprisingly, is greater than in the center of the country.

But the ministry intends in 2016 to open up eight new urgent-care facilities in addition to the 11 established since 2011.

Places with large number of large ultra-Orthodox haredi families have the longest queues in well-baby (tipat halav) centers. But child vaccination rates in haredi clinics increased between 2013 and 2015.

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