What's in and out for 2018?
The Israel basket of health services - Sal HaBriut
Hebrew: סל הבריאות
The Basket of Health Services, Health Basket, Sal Briut or Sal Sherutei Briut in Hebrew, all refer to a range of essential medical services that the Israel health-funds are obligated to provide to their members. The Health Basket also includes treatments, medications and equipment.
The Health Basket is defined by law and does not differ from health-fund to health-fund. The Health Basket is reviewed from time to time and revisions or changes can be made. When changes are made it could happen that the medication you have been taking for a period of time, is no longer covered in the Health Basket, and it has been replaced with something similar.
Services included in the Health Basket are provided free or at a reduced cost. In effect, you may be responsible for a percentage of your prescription cost (between 10% - 90%), a doctor's visit or other examinations or diagnostic procedures. If a medication or service is not included in the Health Basket, you will have to cover the costs on your own.
The health-funds are obliged to provide the following services as outlined by the Ministry of Health - Misrad HaBriut
- Visits to clinics, consultations, diagnosis, treatments from family doctors, specialists and para-medics
- Hospitalization and emergency room services
- Laboratory services either within the health-fund or if necessary through an outside facility. The lab costs may be covered partially or fully.
- Certain medical equipment
- Certain diagnostic procedures including x-rays and scans
- Paramedical services like physiotherapy, speech therapy and occupational therapy.
Please note: All diagnostic and treatment procedures are provided upon a physician's referral only.
Approved Medicines, Medical Technologies & Treatments for 2018
A new list of medicines, treatments and medical technologies covered by the national health insurance was approved in January 2018, and include life-saving Spinraza drug to treat SMA, as well as NIS 40 million for children's dental reform and drugs for lung and breast cancers and cystic fibrosis and a new innovative diabetes treatment. Some of the new inclusions are:
- Drugs for lung cancer patients, metastatic breast cancer, cholesterol lowering injections and drugs for cystic fibrosis were also added to the list.
- The 9,200 Israelis suffering from Type-2 diabetes will benefit from the inclusion of the innovative Flash Glucose Monitoring sensor, which is embedded in the skin
- Dupixent, designed for the treatment of allergic diseases such as eczema. The drug is groundbreaking in that it deals with the disease itself and not just the symptoms.
- Lung cancer treatments - including the drugs Tagrisso, Tecentriq, Keytruda and Alecensa, among others - were included on the list alongside Opdivo to treat head and neck cancer, and Ibrance and Kisqali to treat breast cancer.
- Rydapt, a drug used to treat acute myeloid leukemia, a form of blood cancer
- Orkambi for patients with cystic fibrosis
- Also included are Cholesterol lowering drugs for survivors of heart attacks or strokes with LDL cholesterol above 130
Not included in the Health Basket this year
- Champix (Varenicline), a drug used to treat nicotine addiction, was not included
- The muscular dystrophy drug Duchenne "Exondys 51"
- Xenbilox - a drug that treats Cerebrotendinous xanthomatosis (CTX), a rare genetic metabolic disorder of cholesterol and bile acid metabolism that results in systemic and neurologic abnormalities
- Vimizim - used to treat Morquio A Syndrome, a birth defect which leaves the inflicted at below average height and with difficulty eating, showering and walking, as well as hurts lung-function
Approximately 70,000 Israelis are expected to directly benefit from the new drugs in the health basket (that's an expected drop of 15,000 Israelis over 2017). The drop is directly related to the allocation of funds to the recent children's dental reform led by former minister of health Yakov Litzman.
Consult with your doctor, contact your Health Fund or the MOH for more detailed information.
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