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Israel Journal of Health Policy Research

Zohar Barnett-Itzhaki, Tamar Berman, Itamar Grotto, Eyal Schwartzberg
BACKGROUND: Large amounts of expired and unused medications accumulate in households. This potentially exposes the public to hazards due to uncontrolled use of medications. Most of the expired or unused medications that accumulate in households (household medical waste) is thrown to the garbage or flushed down to the sewage, potentially contaminating waste-water, water resources and even drinking water. There is evidence that pharmaceutical active ingredients reach the environment, including food, however the risk to public health from low level exposure to pharmaceuticals in the environment is currently unknown...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Adele Diederich
Most of the parties involved in healthcare decisions - governments, politicians, healthcare professionals, pharmaceutical companies, special interest groups - actively work to make their desires known. In Israel the public is part of the decision committee; in Germany health care decision are made more or less without the public being involved. In a recently published IJHPR article, Giora Kaplan and Orna Baron-Epel raise the question of how well acquainted senior decision makers in the Israeli health system are with the public's priorities regarding the services being considered for inclusion in the public funding list...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Jone Trovik, Åse Vikanes
Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) affects 1 % of all pregnant women and in western societies it is the most common cause for hospital admission during first trimester. The economic burden of the disease has barely been studied. To estimate the Israeli national burden of HG, Konikoff and co-workers obtained data retrospectively on hospital costs as well as loss of workdays from 184 women hospitalized due to HG from December 2010 until December 2013. Their findings emphasise the need for better treatment to reduce the burden of this disease both for the individual as well as the society...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Pei Chen, Michael A Steinman
Older adults are at high risk of developing multimorbidity, and the high levels of clinical and psychosocial complexity in this population pose special challenges for primary care physicians (PCPs). As a way to improve the care for the older adults, a number of health systems have developed programs to provide comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA), which generally refers to an intensive interprofessional evaluation and management of geriatric syndromes with the goals of maximizing health in aging. Sternberg and Bentur examined the impact of CGA as perceived by PCPs, the PCPs attitude toward CGA, and their satisfaction with CGA...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Tom Konikoff, Tehila Avraham, Ella Ophir, Jacob Bornstein
BACKGROUND: Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) is characterized by severe intractable nausea and vomiting in pregnancy leading to electrolyte imbalance, ketonuria, and weight loss. The cause is unknown. This study sought to investigate the prevalence and characteristics of HG in the Western Galilee in two ethnic populations and to estimate its economic burden. METHODS: Data on ethnicity, age, gestational age, number of pregnancies, and length of hospitalization were collected from the medical files of all women with HG admitted to the Galilee Medical Center in 2010-2013...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Lena Natapov, Avi Sasson, Shlomo P Zusman
BACKGROUND: The National health insurance law enacted in 1995 did not include dental care in its basket of services. Dental care for children was first included in 2010, initially up till 8 years of age. The eligibility age rose to 12 years in 2013. The dental survey of 6 year-olds in 2007 found that the average of decayed, missing and filled teeth index (dmft) was 3.31 and 35 % of children were caries free. The current cross sectional survey of dental health for 6 year-olds was conducted as a comparison to the pre-reform status...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Shmuel Reis, Jacob Urkin, Rachel Nave, Rosalie Ber, Amitai Ziv, Orit Karnieli-Miller, Dafna Meitar, Peter Gilbey, Dror Mevorach
ABSTRACT: We reviewed the existing programs for basic medical education (BME) in Israel as well as their output, since they are in a phase of reassessment and transition. The transition has been informed, in part, by evaluation in 2014 by an International Review Committee (IRC). The review is followed by an analysis of its implications as well as the emergent roadmap for the future. The review documents a trend of modernizing, humanizing, and professionalizing Israeli medical education in general, and BME in particular, independently in each of the medical schools...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Daniel A Goldstein, Salomon M Stemmer, Noa Gordon
Cancer drug expenditures have been increasing significantly in countries around the world. A recent paper in the IJHPR provides new knowledge and insights into this global phenomenon by analyzing how it is playing out in an Israeli health plan with over two million members, whose state-of-the-art information systems provide an opportunity to explore these changes in a comprehensive, detailed and reliable manner. There is a wide variation in both the cost-effectiveness and the budget impact of individual drugs...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
David Levy, David B Abrams, Jeffrey Levy, Laura Rosen
BACKGROUND: The World Health Organization Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (FCTC) established the MPOWER policy package to provide practical country-level guidance on implementing effective policies to reduce smoking rates. The Abridged SimSmoke tobacco control policy simulation model is applied to Israel to estimate the effects on reducing smoking-attributable mortality resulting from full implementation of MPOWER policies. METHODS: Smoking prevalence from the 2014 Israel National Health Interview Survey 3 and population data from the Israel Central Bureau of Statistics were used to calculate the number of current smokers...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Yossef Lomnicky, Daniel Kurnik, Ronen Loebstein, Itzhak Katzir, Janet Vesterman-Landes, Nava Siegelmann-Danieli
BACKGROUND: Modern drug therapy accounts for a major share of health expenditure and challenges public provider resources. The objective of our study was to compare drug expenditure trends for ten major drug classes over 16 years at Maccabi Healthcare Services (MHS), the 2(nd) largest healthcare organization in Israel. METHODS: A retrospective analysis of drug expenditure per HMO beneficiary between the years 1998-2014. Trends in annual mean drug expenditures per MHS member were compared among 10 major drug classes...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
James Halpern
As shared trauma reality becomes more common in Israel and other countries, this commentary argues that we need more research to inform how to best assist mental health professionals who are both victims and helpers in the aftermath of traumatic events. Typical remedies for the occupational hazards of working with trauma survivors may not apply for those who are exposed to a prolonged terror threat. Research-informed self-care strategies need to be identified and practiced.
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Tuvia Horev, Shlomit Avni
The need for a national policy to mitigate health inequity has been recognized in scientific research and policy papers around the world. Despite the moral duty and the social, medical, and economic logic behind this goal, much difficulty surfaces in implementing national policies that propose to attain it. This is mainly due to an implementation gap that originates in the complex interventions that are needed and the lack of practical ability to translate knowledge into practices and policy tools. The article describes the Israeli attempt to design and implement a national strategic plan to mitigate health inequity...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Itay Pruginin, Dorit Segal-Engelchin, Richard Isralowitz, Alexander Reznik
BACKGROUND: To date, studies on the outcomes of a shared war reality among mental health professionals (MHPs) in southern Israel have focused only on those residing and working in Otef Gaza. The aim of this study is to determine the impact of different exposure levels to shared trauma on the professional quality of life of MHPs in southern Israel. This study compares the level of secondary traumatic stress, burnout, and compassion satisfaction of social workers from Otef Gaza to social workers living and working in the Beer-Sheva area who experience occasional missile attacks...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Daniella Arieli, Miriam J Hirschfeld
The literature in the area of the health workforce and societies in conflict encompasses a wide range of studies and potential directions. Lately, Keshet and Popper-Giveon reported on a study based on interviews with 13 Arab Israeli nurses who work in Israeli hospitals. This preliminary study describes how being an Arab nurse in Israel is experienced and perceived by those nurses. The results indicate the need for further studies on the complexity of health workers' experiences in their changing and multi-faceted professional, cultural, gender and national identities...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Yael Keshet, Ariela Popper-Giveon
BACKGROUND: Recruitment and retention of a diverse ethnic workforce in healthcare settings contribute to the provision of culturally competent care in multicultural contexts. Nevertheless, the work experiences of ethnic minority nurses, which impact the attractiveness of the occupation, job burnout and turnover intentions, are not well understood. The present exploratory research seeks to examine the work experiences of ethnic minority Arab nurses in Israeli public hospitals. Israel is an interesting case study as the number of Arab nurses operating in the Israeli workforce has risen significantly over recent decades; many of them work in mixed Jewish-Arab environments, which are affected by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Giora Kaplan, Orna Baron-Epel
BACKGROUND: Decision makers often assume they know the public's standpoints and see themselves as capable of representing them. The aim of this study is to assess the level of acquaintance that senior decision-makers in the Israeli health system have concerning the priorities of the public in whose name they act. METHODS: A phone survey was conducted with a representative population sample and face-to-face interviews were conducted with senior decision-makers. RESULTS: The decision-makers did predict correctly the public's desired level of government involvement in health care; but only some of them correctly predicted the public's preferences on allocation of funds-to health versus other areas...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Elizabeth A Joy, Linda S Pescatello
Participation in regular physical activity is associated with a multitude of benefits including a reduction in chronic disease and premature mortality, and improved quality of life. All segments of society need to collaborate with one another in an effort to promote active lives. The Israeli "Gymnasium Law" requires pre-exercise evaluation prior to exercise participation in a health club. Recently that law was modified to allow for participant pre-screening with the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire for Everyone (PAR-Q+)...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Amit Arora, Laura Cummings, Peter Crome
With vast improvements in healthcare in recent decades, people are living longer but often with higher rates of morbidity and chronic illnesses. This has resulted in a higher proportion of the population who may benefit from early end-of-life 'conversation and planning', but also gives healthcare professionals more time during which these discussions are relevant, as people live longer with their chronic diseases. A survey conducted by Lifshitz et al (Isr J Health Policy Res 5:6, 2016) sought to assess physician awareness and willingness to discuss designating a proxy decision-maker with patients, in order to aid end-of-life care in the event that the patient is rendered unable to make or communicate these decisions later in life...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Steven A Schroeder
Over the past 30 years, Israel has made great progress in attitudes and practices about smoking; probably nothing else has contributed more to the health of its population. Yet, a recent survey about a non-smoking ban at an Israeli health sciences campus found incomplete enforcement. In addition, smoking rates among health sciences students, though lower than the general population, were higher than might be expected based on rates in other developed countries. Whether the ban is-as the authors speculate-"an intrusive life style intervention" or a justifiable public health intervention, cuts to the heart of the history of tobacco control efforts and their opposition by the tobacco industry...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Moriah E Ellen, Einav Horowitz, Sharona Vaknin, John N Lavis
BACKGROUND: The use of research evidence in health policymaking is an international challenge. Health systems, including that of Israel, are usually characterized by scarce resources and the necessity to make rapid policy decisions. Knowledge transfer and exchange (KTE) has emerged as a paradigm to start bridging the "know-do" gap. The purpose of this study was to explore the views of health system policymakers and senior executives involved in the policy development process in Israel regarding the role of health systems and policy research (HSPR) in health policymaking, the barriers and facilitators to the use of evidence in the policymaking process, and suggestions for improving the use of HSPR in the policymaking process...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
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