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Israel Journal of Health Policy Research

David T Levy, David B Abrams, Jeffrey Levy, Laura Rosen
[This corrects the article DOI: 10.1186/s13584-016-0101-8.].
2017: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Rosa R Baier, Vincent Mor
Despite widespread agreement that nursing homes' use of antipsychotic medications for residents without specific psychiatric diagnoses is a marker of poor quality of care, prevalence remains high. Additionally, variation suggests continued opportunity to improve care even in countries, like the United States, that have long-standing policies designed to decrease antipsychotic medication use. In a recent Israel Journal of Health Policy Research article, Frankenthal et al. presented results linking increased antipsychotic medication use prevalence in Tel Aviv nursing homes with facility characteristics, including some that "undermine quality of care," and called for increased national focus on this area...
2017: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Joseph Mendlovic, Ethel-Sherry Gordon, Ziona Haklai, Jill Meron, Arnon Afek
BACKGROUND: Medical practice variation refers to differences in health service utilization among regions in the same country. It is used as a tool for studying health inequities. In 2011, the OECD launched a Medical Practice Variation Project which examines regional differences within countries and explores the sources of the inter-regional differences. The aim of this study is to examine the patterns and trends in geographic variation for selected health services in Israel. METHODS: The analysis is based on data from the National Hospital Discharges Database (NHDD) of the Israeli Ministry of Health...
2017: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Vardit Ravitsky
The use of donor sperm or egg for reproduction raises the issue of the right of donor-conceived individuals to know their genetic origins. This paper argues in favor of acknowledging such a right and explores the challenges that cross-border medically assisted reproduction would raise in relation to it. It first explores possible justifications for such a right by discerning its possible conceptual and empirical groundings. It describes some key ethical and policy implications of the removal of donor anonymity...
2017: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Baruch Levi
BACKGROUND: The perceived health status indicator included in the OECD Health Statistics suffers from severe methodological limitations related to data collection. Furthermore, this indicator is also included in the OECD's Better Life Index, thus distorting the total health score of some OECD countries, among them Israel. The purpose of this paper is to explore the erroneous use of OECD health data in Israel and to warn of its implications. METHODS: Analysis of data from the OECD Health Database, Better Life Index and the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics, review of media reports and governmental documents concerning health measures, conversations and correspondence held with officials in the relevant organizations...
2017: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Gary M Ginsberg
BACKGROUND: Consumption of sugar causes tooth decay, overweight and obesity related morbidities. This paper in response to the Minister of Health's request, provides estimates of the mortality, morbidity and health care costs attributable to sugar consumption in Israel along with the effects of reducing sugar consumption. METHODS: Gender specific relative risks of many diseases from overweight (25 < =BMI < 30) and obesity (BMI > =30) were applied to the national gender specific prevalence rates of overweight and obesity in order to calculate the population attributable fraction (PAF) from overweight and obesity...
2017: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Bruce Rosen, Avi Israeli
The Israel Journal of Health Policy Research (IJHPR) will soon be completing its fifth year of publication. In the 5 years since the IJHPR's launch in January 2012, it has published over 250 articles, achieved an impact factor of 1.35, and secured a place in many of the leading journal databases including, most recently, Medline. The IJHPR's annual rate of submissions continues to increase, with more and more submissions focusing on major system-wide developments in Israeli health care. The journal's accomplishments reflect the hard work and significant contributions of its authors, reviewers, commentators, editorial board members and sponsor - the National Institute for Health Policy Research...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Sherry Glied
As Ellen et al. point out, there is room for improvement in knowledge transfer between academic research and policymaking. At the same time, retrospective analyses of health policy often identify research influences on policymaking. Part of this paradox can be explained by the difference between the nature of research and the nature of policymaking. Research necessarily focuses on the past, examining changes that have already taken place. Policymakers want to understand how policy will shape the future. A key element of successful knowledge transfer is the use of mechanisms that allow past research to be used to forecast future policy consequences...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Hagai Boas, Anat Rosenthal, Nadav Davidovitch
BACKGROUND: During the summer of 2013, after samples of poliomyelitis virus were found in sewage, Israel launched an intensive national oral polio vaccine (OPV) campaign. The clinical objective of the campaign was rather clear. With not a single case of infantile paralysis and with a population already highly protected with IPV (a dead version of the vaccine), the goal was to foster collective immunity so that risk populations could also be protected. This, however, entailed a rather unusual issue: how to persuade parents whose children already received an IPV to re-vaccinate their children, now with a live yet attenuated version of the virus that was excluded from the national vaccination program in 2004...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Jonathan M Samet
In an article recently published in the IJHPR, Ginsberg and colleagues from Israel's Public Health Services estimate the disease burden from airborne particulate matter in Israel. Using national data on the concentration of PM2.5 (particulate matter less than 2.5 μm in aerodynamic diameter) and risk estimates from meta-analyses, they calculate that about 2000 deaths (4.7% of total deaths) are attributable to air pollution. Although inherently subject to uncertainty, such estimates are useful for motivating public health protection and gauging the stringency of any needed regulations...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
David R Katz
Medical education is a dynamic and continually evolving process, some of which is style, and some of which is linked to changing perspectives in medical practice. A paper by Reis et al., taken in conjunction with the recent paper from an ad hoc International Review Committee (Schoenbaum et al.), provides a reflective view of where Israeli medical education stood in 2014 and places it in an international perspective. Reis at al also take this further, showing that in Israel change is occurring as a result of this review and comment on a number of important issues where further reflection, discussion, and work is required...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
David J Weber, Walter Orenstein, William A Rutala
Influenza causes substantial morbidity and mortality worldwide each year. Healthcare-associated influenza is a frequent event. Health care personnel (HCP) may be the source for infecting patients and may propagate nosocomial outbreaks. All HCP should receive a dose of influenza vaccine each year to protect themselves and others. This commentary will discuss the study recently published in the IJHPR by Nutman and Yoeli which assessed the beliefs and attitudes of HCP in an Israel hospital regarding influenza and the influenza vaccine...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Gary Michael Ginsberg, Eilat Shinar, Eran Kopel, Daniel Chemtob
BACKGROUND: The present permanent deferral policy in Israel for MSM was established in 1977 and was based on the previous (now outdated) USA Food and Drug Administration standards. This study analyses epidemiological data regarding blood donations among MSM, in order to estimate the risk for HIV transfusion transmitted infection (TTI) if the policy is changed to allow at-risk MSM to donate blood. METHODS: An Excel based spreadsheet model integrated demographic, epidemiological data from the HIV National Register, laboratory, blood donation and testing data in order to calculate TTI due to false-negatives in known HIV+ donors, windows period donations, asymptomatic carriers and laboratory misclassification errors...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Carmel Shalev, Adi Moreno, Hedva Eyal, Michal Leibel, Rhona Schuz, Talia Eldar-Geva
The proliferation of medically assisted reproduction (MAR) for the treatment of infertility has brought benefit to many individuals around the world. But infertility and its treatment continue to be a cause of suffering, and over the past decade, there has been a steady growth in a new global market of inter-country medically assisted reproduction (IMAR) involving 'third-party' individuals acting as surrogate mothers and gamete donors in reproductive collaborations for the benefit of other individuals and couples who wish to have children...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Ayal Hassidim, Raeed Kayouf, Nirit Yavnai, Naomi Panush, David Dagan, Tarif Bader, Michael Hartal
BACKGROUND: The Israel Defense Forces Medical Corps (IDF MC) institutional review board (IRB) is one of approximately 50 IRBs active in Israel. In addition to routine IRB considerations it must also address in its deliberations specific safeguards in place in the IDF to protect research volunteers in the military environment. In this report, we present the characteristics of the IDF IRB, including the unique circumstances that led to a 2008 change in the pre-IRB advisory and preparatory process (APP)...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Rola Hamood, Hatem Hamood, Ilya Merhasin, Lital Keinan-Boker
BACKGROUND: Cancer survivorship has increasingly become the focus of research due to progress in early detection and advancements in the therapeutic approach, but high-quality information sources for outcomes, potential confounders and personal characteristics present a challenge. Few studies have collected breast cancer care data from mixed data sources and validated them, and to the best of our knowledge, none so far have been conducted in Israel, where National Health Insurance Law assures universal health care, delivered through four health care funds with computerized administrative, pharmaceutical and medical databases...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Raida Daeem, Ivonne Mansbach-Kleinfeld, Ilana Farbstein, Raseem Khamaisi, Anneke Ifrah, Ahmad Sheikh Muhammad, Sylvana Fennig, Alan Apter
BACKGROUND: Many distressed minority adolescents with little access to professional mental health services use teachers and school counselors as their main consultation sources. This paper presents data from the Galilee study on factors that may increase the probability of adolescents' help-seeking in school and discusses the needed linkage between the school mental health services and those provided by other agencies, in the framework of the Mental Health Reform in Israel. METHODS: This cross-sectional survey included 1639, 9th grade students living in 5 Arab localities in the Galilee in northern Israel, representative of the Muslim and Druze populations...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Asnat Groutz, Hadar Amir, Revital Caspi, Eran Sharon, Yifat Amir Levy, Mordechai Shimonov
BACKGROUND: Patient preferences regarding the gender of their physicians is a highly sensitive issue, which can be particularly salient in intimate medical situations. Previously published studies found that women tend to prefer female physicians, especially in the case of obstetricians and gynecologists. Data regarding other intimate specialties, such as breast surgery, are scarce. The present study was undertaken to assess gender preferences of women regarding their choice of a breast surgeon...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Ofra Kalter-Leibovici, Angela Chetrit, Shlomit Avni, Emma Averbuch, Ilya Novikov, Nihaya Daoud
BACKGROUND: Cigarette smoking is a major cause of health disparities. We aimed to determine social characteristics associated with smoking status and age at smoking initiation in the ethnically-diverse population of Israel. METHODS: This is a cross-sectional survey, based on data collected during 2010 by the Israel Bureau of Statistics, in a representative nationwide sample of 7,524 adults (≥20 years). Information collected by personal interviews included a broad set of demographic and socio-economic characteristics and detailed information on smoking habits...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
Eric D Amster
Pharmaceutical disposal and the environmental fate of medication metabolites directly impacts the public's health in two significant ways: accidental medication ingestion of pharmaceuticals that were not disposed of properly results in inadvertent toxicity; and environmental health consequences of pharmaceuticals that were inappropriately disposed and which contaminate municipal water supply. In reviewing the effectiveness of medication disposal policy globally, it is crucial to not only determine which policies are effective but also to assess why they are effective...
2016: Israel Journal of Health Policy Research
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