Health minister chooses insider to be new director-general

Former director of Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer, Prof. Arnon Afek, will replace Prof. Ronni Gamzu.

Prof. Arnon Afek (photo credit: HEALTH MINISTRY)
Prof. Arnon Afek
(photo credit: HEALTH MINISTRY)
After weeks of interviewing potential candidates to replace her ministry’s director- general, Prof. Ronni Gamzu, Health Minister Yael German decided on Wednesday to choose an inside candidate – Prof. Arnon Afek.
Afek, a 51-year-old pathologist who studied medicine at the Hebrew University Medical Faculty and medical administration at Ben-Gurion University, has been in charge of the ministry’s medical administration for some 17 months.
Before coming to the ministry, he was the deputy director of Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer.
He serves in the reserves of the IDF as a colonel in the Medical Corps and is a faculty member of Tel Aviv University’s Sackler School of Medicine. He is married to Dr. Limor Afek, a dentist, and the father of two.
German, who had been seeking a suitable female candidate for the job – which would have been a first for the ministry – but did not manage to find one willing to take it, said that “the challenges facing the health system are huge. When recommendations of the [German] committee to strengthen the public health system are made and adopted, we will continue to make new reforms and continue with the ministry’s accomplishments in many fields.
“Prof. Afek comes from inside the system and is one of its leaders, so the management continuity and vision will continue without shock waves to the system.”
German thanked Gamzu, who was in office for more than four years and will apparently return to Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center and work as a gynecological surgeon.