​Today, the committee convened to reduce the constriction in mental health hospitals (the committee’s full name is "Steering Committee for Reducing the Mechanical Restriction in Israel") and submitted its conclusions.

The Committee for the Reduction of Tying Presented its Conclusions

Credit: Liron Buzaglo.

The conclusions were submitted by the Chairman of the Committee, Dr. Boaz Lev, to the Director of the Ministry of Health, Moshe Bar Siman Tov. Families of mental health patients also arrived to the event at which the conclusions were presented.

  • Chairman of the Committee Dr. Boaz Lev said: "We are talking about a phenomenon that expresses the tip of the iceberg, the system has undergone many revolutions and we are ready for the next revolution that will bring psychiatry closer to the front of the stage, from the backyard to the living room. I thank the Director General and the members of the committee who worked hard to produce an appropriate and important report.

    We heard everyone who wanted to appear before the committee, and I must praise the volunteer associations, the press and the public for placing this on the table. This is a vital and important step. The reduction of restrictions begins first and foremost with a change in perception and its placement to professionals, and leadership on the subject is important. The conceptual change must be translated into clear procedures and rules that will constitute a clear framework for conduct.

    This of course requires resources and appropriate construction – to adapt the environment to the patient, and we will continue to monitor the implementation of the program.

  • Health Ministry Director General Moshe Bar Siman Tov added: "The work of the committee is true and will serve as a compass and guide for the coming years, and I thank the families of the patients, the volunteer organizations and the organizations for their willingness to raise the issue to public order. I thank the hospital directors who are the leaders of the system.
    I have a lot of harsh criticism about the way this problem is sometimes presented, and on the other hand there was a system here that despite all the attacks and despite the difficulties people had the courage to say that we may have to do things differently. The system saw in the dialogue created an opportunity to change the problems we see in the psychiatric system is a systemic problems not personal.

The resources we allocate are far from sufficient, but we will continue to allocate, the shortage in the system has been created over many years in the mental health system and the problems there are more severe, yet we have seen a tremendous change in all the hospitals and a very significant decrease in ties.
We did not just want a specific change, in order to create real change, we need a systemic change that includes procedures, reports, and quality indicators. We’ve brought in a report that’s applicable. It is important for us to look 20 years ahead and how the system should show and how to make its connection with general medicine at the physical level, the level of accessibility and the clinical level. We are committed to implementing the recommendations and we want you as a forum to keep track of the application."

Families of patients also came to the conclusions submission (Noa’s father) who thanked the committee members and hoped that things had changed.
The members of the committee are:

  • Dr. Boaz Lev, Commissioner of Public Complaints, Chairman of the Committee
  • Prof. Avi Bleich, chairman of the National Council for Mental Health
  • Dr. Tal Bergman Levy, Head of the Mental Health Division, Ministry of Health
  • Ms. Pnina Barbelak, Director of Nursing at the Lev Hasharon Mental Health Center
  • Mr. Firas Hayek, Director of Medicine, Ministry of Health
  • Dr. Zvi Fishel, representative of Clalit Health Services
  • Yonit Efrati, representative of the Commission for Equal Rights for People with Disabilities, Ministry of Justice
  • Avi Oren, representative of the Lishma organization
  • Dr. Yaakov Polakiewicz, Director of the Ma’ale Hacarmel Mental Health Center
  • Prof. Zeev Kaplan, Director of the Be’er Sheva Mental Health Center
  • Dr. Eli Shamir, representative of the organization “Ozma".
  • Ruth Steiner, representative of the organization "Ozma"
  • Attorney Sharon Primor, a representative of Bizchut
  • Mr. Haim Hupert, Budget and Pricing Planning Division of the Ministry of Health – Secretary of the Committee.