Budget cuts endanger disease prevention program, says Health Ministry

Senior Health Ministry officials say budget cuts put health promotion program "Efsharibari" at risk.

Fresh fruit. (photo credit: Wikimedia commons/ Mervat Salman)
Fresh fruit.
(photo credit: Wikimedia commons/ Mervat Salman)
The joint disease-prevention and health-promotion program Efsharibari (“It’s Possible to Be Healthy”) of the Health and Education Ministries may have to be reduced because of budget cuts, Health Ministry associate director-general Dr. Boaz Lev said Tuesday.
Lev was speaking at a festive session of the Knesset Labor, Social Welfare and Health Committee to mark Knesset Health Day that was attended by Health Minister Yael German and headed by deputy committee chairman MK Shuli Muallem. German said that disease must be prevented.”The health system here is excellent thanks to the power of the people who work in it. We are talking about our future.”
But Lev, a strong advocate of prevention, said Efsharibari -- aimed at providing vegetables and fruits to schoolchildren, encouraging them to walk and ride bikes to school, building bike paths, marking nutritional values clearly on food and reducing sodium, for example -- is in danger because of shrinking budgets.
Various other Knesset committees discussed health promotion issues, and free health checkups were offered near the Knesset faction rooms.