Health Minister Yael German 370.
(photo credit: Courtesy Knesset)
The regular supply of prescription medications will continue beyond May 1, as
the Knesset at midnight on Monday voted 30 to one in favor of allowing the sale
of packages lacking information translated into Arabic and
Previously, the May 1 deadline would have prevented the sale of
packages without translations.
A private member’s bill initiated the
translation requirement. At present, package information appears in Hebrew and
The pharmaceutical companies argued that they were not ready for
the change, while Health Minister Yael German said that they had been given
enough time – a total of 26 months – to prepare.
German said on Tuesday
that a special temporary order approved by the Knesset made it possible to
postpone the deadline and that the ministry had arranged for a special levy on
the companies that will pay for the translation.
The ministry said that
in the meantime, speakers of the two languages will be able to call Russian- and
Arabic-speaking pharmacists with questions about drug packages. In addition, a
special website will be provided to explain the drugs to patients.
minister blamed the companies for the delay, charging that they “ignored” the
Knesset’s original regulation about the translations.
responsibility to the public, the ministry prepared the temporary order to
ensure the continued supply of the drugs,” she said.