We’re less than three weeks away from the third election in Israel in less than a year, and most politicians must be taking the average voter for a fool.Do they really think that, aside from fringe pockets on the far Right and far Left, anyone really cares about the Trump peace plan or the annexation of Ma’aleh Adumim and the Jordan Valley? Whether annexation takes place or not, is it really going to have any effect on Israelis’s daily lives – including those who live in the aforementioned areas? What Israelis seem to care more about is their safety and well-being. That’s what should be at the forefront of every political message, speech and ad during this countdown to March 2.The former – our personal safety – has been put into question with the uptick of terrorism over the last week. And the latter – our well-being – is in a free fall picking up steam due to the sorry state of our national health system. Take, for example, the scandal that Yediot Aharonot uncovered last week at Rambam Hospital in Haifa, the biggest health establishment in the North.For more than a year, cancer patients were allegedly systematically given expired chemotherapy medication. According to the report, Rambam’s cytotoxic lab at the hospital’s oncology department kept medicines after they expired and in many cases allegedly forged the dates and serial numbers on their packages.The expired drugs, were then transferred to medical staff and administered to patients. Rambam confirmed many of the details of the Yediot report and expressed apologies to the patients and their families.That malfeasance might seem like an isolated incident, but is unfortunately just the tip of the iceberg of the maladies and neglect afflicting health care in Israel.Hospitals are terribly overcrowded and patients in ER wards are lined up in the hallways. The country desperately needs at least two more large hospitals and dozens of trained physicians to deal with the rising needs of a growing population.To his credit, Benny Gantz has attempted to put a focus on the healthcare plight. As Jeremy Sharon reported in The Jerusalem Post, on Sunday, the Blue & White leader made his third speech in the last two weeks on the subject of health, lambasting the deficiencies in the system and throwing out 5,000 – a reference to the name of the legal cases against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – as the number of Israelis who die each year due to hospital-acquired infections.Although it must be seen through the prism of campaign rhetoric, Gantz made valid points in his comments.“These are the lives of people lying in hospital corridors and waiting for a bed to become free. The lives of people waiting six months for an appointment with a specialist doctor, or waiting for hours in emergency rooms,” he said, pledging to fund 2,500 new hospital beds, and create positions for 500 new doctors and 1,500 new nurses.Gantz said that he would use royalties from Israel’s natural gas reserves to invest in the health system and redress some of its problems.More empty campaign promises? Perhaps, but at least someone is talking about our woeful health care system and making it an issue.Health Minister Yaakov Litzman attempted to refute Gantz’s attack, saying that the ministry had already adopted a plan to add more than 2,400 new hospital beds, half of which have already been implemented and half of which would be implemented by 2022.He also noted that the ministry was in advanced planning for two hospitals, which would add another 1,000 hospital beds to the health service, as well as the addition of 2,500 new nurses and more than 1,000 new doctors.Those developments, if implemented, are indeed welcome news. But with the current coronavirus scare that threatens to spread and reach Israel more than it already has, improved hospital care is required now.Lives depend on it and this is what all the parties running for the next Knesset should be focusing on in the days remaining till the March 2 election.Israelis want to know that they have hospitals that can meet their needs. Not a peace plan that, according to predictions, won’t fundamentally change their lives.