Former health minister Yael German.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Comparative, objective information on medical services provided by the four public health funds is now available – in Hebrew only, for the time being – on a regularly updated section of the Health Ministry’s website.
The section – the first of its kind – is called Magia Li Kol Habriut and contains some 10,000 topics, addresses and pieces of data. The ministry said it launched the section first in Hebrew, but because of the large amount of information, it will take longer to translate into Arabic, English and Russian.
Information on medications, examinations, treatments, the contents of the latest basket of health services, where to turn and criteria to get services are also provided at www.health.gov.il/Subjects/UninsuredRights/ Pages/call-gov-il.aspx or via the entrance to the website at www.health.gov.il.
The site compares supplementary insurance programs offered by Clalit, Maccabi, Meuhedet and Leumit health services, including premiums, ages, ways of joining and waiting times for receiving all benefits. In addition, there is data on organ transplants and treatments abroad and the hiring of private nurses.
Health Minister Yael German said her office is looking into the possibility of using the website section to compare public health fund services with those of private health insurance companies. Negotiations are being held with the Treasury’s branch supervising the capital market and insurance.
The section also provides an official ministry letter that can be printed out stating the individual’s eligibility for services.
It can be sent by email or fax as requested and be sent to the medical institution where one seeks medical services.
Residents who lack access to a computer can call the ministry’s Kol Habriut phone service at *5400 and ask for information that will be sent to them by fax.
German said the new online information will increase transparency and improve accessibility to medical services for people from all sectors, geographic regions, ages and socioeconomic levels.
She added that comparative data on private health insurance will lead to less “waste due to people purchasing expensive policies they don’t need. I hope people will use it on a routine basis so they know what to demand from their health fund.”
Ministry director-general Prof. Arnon Afek said that the new system “is a breakthrough representing the ministry’s worldview that everyone has a right to know” about comparisons, including health indices in the various hospitals.