(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
The Knesset Finance Committee has pressured the Treasury to allocate another NIS 400 million for the four public health funds and the hospitals and to expand the basket of health services over the next two years.
The committee also approved late Tuesday a new “capping agreement” for financial arrangements between the insurers and the hospitals that will be in effect from 2017 through 2019. The agreement sets the minimum and maximum number of hospital patients for which the health funds will pay each month, thus stabilizing the medical centers’ income.
In the past, with the intention of preventing hospitals from keeping patients hospitalized too long as they were paid per diem, the capping set a limit for how much the health funds would pay them.
But this cost many hospitals who gave patients legitimate treatment for additional days.
Under the new arrangement, the health funds will be entitled to set different agreements with hospitals, except for internal medicine departments that treat the elderly and the most complicated cases. In any case, this will be limited. Capping will also not include urgent care and private medical service (Sharap) or the soon-to-beopened Assuta Hospital in Ashdod.
If a hospital exceeds its capping limit, the National Insurance Institute – which allocates health-tax revenue among the health funds – will deduct 40% of the excess amount from the hospital’s allocation.
Finance Committee chairman Moshe Gafni thanked Health Minister Ya’acov Litzman for his involvement on behalf of the hospitals and the health funds on the matter.