A report published by the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Unit (COGAT) shows a 10 percent increase in the number of Palestinian Authority Arabs who received treatment in Israeli hospitals in 2012.
The total number of 219,464 patients, 21,270 of them children, includes the companions accompanying the patients in Israel.
The numbers represent a dramatic increase in the number of PA Arabs who receive treatment by Israelis medical professionals, compared with 197,713 patients in Israeli hospitals in 2011 and only 144,838 in 2008.
COGAT, a military unit which is responsible for implementing the Israeli Government’s policy in Judea and Samaria, stated, “The Civil Administration, through its health department (HDCA), works closely with the Palestinian Ministry of Health to support the medical needs of the Palestinian population throughout Judea and Samaria.” The HDCA manages all issues relating to Israeli-Palestinian healthcare coordination, primarily the transfer of Palestinian patients to hospitals in Israel.
The HDCA further works to enable professional medical training for Palestinian Authority Arabs by Israel through the encouragement of medical conferences and the training of Palestinian medical staff in Israeli hospitals. Training sessions take place several times a year, initiated by both the HDCA and the Palestinian Authority.
In 2012, the Civil Administration paid $560,000 to send PA Arab doctors, nurses, and paramedics for training in Israel. The Civil Administration has also set aside a budget to finance critical medical procedures for patients who are not covered by Palestinian or UNRWA health insurance and are not able to pay privately.
Tazpit’s Anav Silverman reported last year that Suhila Abd el-Salam, the sister of Hamas Prime Minister in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, accompanied her husband for treatment in Israel. Her husband was admitted to Bellinson Hospital, in Petach Tikvah, for immediate medical treatment following a serious heart condition.
Haniyeh’s sister and her husband requested permission to travel to Israel to receive the necessary medical treatment because Gaza hospitals could not properly treat the condition.
This was not the only time that a Gaza resident was treated in Israel. This past March, a 15-year-old boy in Gaza was transported to the Kaplan Medical Center in Rehovot after suffering from severe burns and shrapnel injuries from an alleged rocket launching pad that was set up in Jabalya, a neighborhood in northern Gaza.
Source: The Jewish Press