Report: Deficits at Israeli HMOs Tripled in 2018

YERUSHALAYIM -
A view of the Meuhedet Health Services clinic, main branch, in Yerushalayim. (Kobi Gideon/Flash90))

A Health Ministry report shows that the deficits of Israel’s four main health maintenance organization (Kupot Cholim) more than tripled in 2018, compared to a year before. The operating costs of the funds were NIS 350 million more than the money they took in during 2018, a major jump over the NIS 94 million deficit in 2017. The main culprit in the report was the Meuhedet HMO, which was NIS 316 million in the red for the year.

On the other hand, the Clalit HMO emerged as a “hero” in the report. In 2017, Clalit had a NIS 433 million deficit, but ended 2018 with a NIS 23 million surplus. However, ministry officials said, that was due to massive government assistance to help the group. It also entailed ending all research and development in the HMO’s labs, the organization said. With that, the HMO’s hospitals ended the year with a NIS 2.16 billion deficit.

Deputy Health Minister Rabbi Yaakov Litzman said that his ministry “would not rest from its efforts to increase funding for those who are in need of health care. The report again stresses the need to increase resources for the health system.” He added that the issue had been under discussion before the elections, and that he hoped it could be resolved after the next election, as no budget decisions could be made until then.