​Minister of Health meeting with heads of local authorities: By September we will approve the establishment of a new medical center in the Kiryat Ata area

In a meeting with the municipalities’ mayors, the Minister of Health, Rabbi Yaakov Litzman, reviewed the measures taken by the Ministry of Health in recent years in the north, as well as the activities currently being carried out on the subject. In addition, the minister concluded that by coming September, the necessary permits will be granted for the construction of a new medical facility in the Krayot area. The complex will include a general hospital, a geriatric hospital and a psychiatric hospital.

The Minister is attentive to the voices emerging from the field and has summoned to this day the heads of local authorities from the north. The Minister detailed his efforts to narrow the gaps between the periphery and the center area and informed them about the establishment of a new medical center in the Krayot area.

Minister of Health Rabbi Yaakov Litzman: "The concern for the residents of the periphery and residents of the north is at the top of the health system agenda, and we will not accept the unreasonable gap in the life expectancy between the center area and the periphery. Therefore, I announced today to the heads of local authorities about the permits for the establishment of the new medical center.

Litzman added: "We work every day and every hour in a series of essential steps, including the granting of MRI devices to all the hospitals in the periphery, the establishment of front emergency rooms, bringing doctors to the north, etc. We invest resources and efforts to optimize and improve the needs of health and medical services in the north and south. I was happy to meet with some of the heads of these authorities in my office to discuss the existing problems and to continue to make the necessary changes in the health field. We will take a number of important actions and we will not rest from seeing the periphery a national and social task and a policy of affirmative action for the benefit of the sick public. "
The meeting was attended by many mayors who admired the announcement.

Minister of Health Rabbi Yaakov Litzman added: “In every key decision, we examine the benefit to medical needs in the periphery and to the benefit of all citizens of Israel. Narrowing the gap between the center area and the periphery in health services is a cornerstone of the Ministry of Health, and we work for it in full commitment".
Ministry of Health Director-General Moshe Bar-Siman Tov added: "The public health system is being tested to address the gaps in the availability of services between the center and the periphery. We are aware of this and give significant priority to the additional resources of the system to the periphery in the short and long term. Minister Litzman leads the issue with great determination and brings additions to the system that narrow the gaps. We will continue to strengthen the periphery in the coming years. "
Mayor of Kiryat Ata Yaakov Peretz "The establishment of a hospital in Kiryat Ata will provide a solution for all the residents of the Galilee, the Gulf and the nearby communities. This is a courageous decision by the Health Minister, which means increasing the life expectancy of citizens of north. The establishment of the hospital it’s a dream come true for Kiryat Ata.

Nir Keidar Deputy Director General for Strategic and Economic Planning at the Ministry of Health described before the mayors of what has been done so far for the periphery and the north, among others Keidar updated the participants on the details of the activities carried out in the health system:

  • The opening of 14 emergency medical centers in the periphery, including the northern communities of Ofakim, Shaked and Katzrin. 
  • The establishment of a radiotherapy institute at an investment of NIS 80m in the Ziv hospital in Safed. For the first time in years, residents of the north will no longer travel to Haifa.
  • Encourage doctors to work in the periphery, including a full-timer program and transfer of specialist’s doctors to the periphery. Doubling of the number of doctors with a budget of tens of millions of shekels per year.
  • Opening MRI devices in the periphery in 6 hospitals in the north, 2 mobile devices. 2 additional licenses allocated that will be implemented soon.
  • Special allocation of hospital beds and positions for the periphery. In the coming years, 300 beds will be opened and a 100-bed rehabilitation hospital will be opened in Poriah with a 150 million NIS budget.
  • Assistance in the opening of a medical school in Safed in the amount of NIS 3 million in 2018 and in 2019 in the amount of 7 million Shekels.
  • Training of nurses from the Bedouin sector for the residents of the South, more than 50 female students in the course, in addition to 62 in the first cycle that have already been trained, and in addition to the Bedouin Certificate Program in 2015, 25 graduates and 30 in 2016.
  • Upgrading and developing hospitals in the periphery (Ziv, Nahariya, Barzilai, Poriya, HaEmek, Nazareth and Soroka) at an investment of approximately 1 billion NIS in recent years.

Changing the formula for allocating resources to the MHO’s in favor of the citizens of the periphery, as well as the incentive of the MHO’s to invest in the periphery in the amount of 700 million NIS per year.

In addition, during the period of Minister Litzman a special department was established in the Ministry of Health to reduce social gaps in the system, (something that does not exist in any government ministry).

Meeting for the Establishment of a New Medical Center in the Kiryat Ata Area