Medical Tourism to Israel
Israel is one of the world’s most popular medical tourism destinations, primarily due to its global reputation for high quality healthcare and world-renowned medical facilities. Many complicated treatments and procedures that would otherwise be unavailable in other countries are accessible in Israel at reasonable prices. Such procedures include orthopedic surgeries, oncology, fertility, IVF treatments, and neurosurgery.
The Healthcare System in Israel
Israel’s high standards in healthcare services, top-of-the-line medical resources, ultra-modern hospitals and healthcare facilities, and a very high specialist-patient ratio, makes the Israeli healthcare system one of the most advanced and innovative anywhere in the world. Israel’s reputation as a healthcare leader in various fields of medicine is unquestionable.
There are around 70 general hospitals and medical centers in Israel, the majority of which are owned and operated by the government and non-profit organizations.
The Israeli Ministry of Health is responsible for the control and management of health policies in the country, including the standardization and implementation of health regulations among the various hospitals and health centers in the nation.
The Ministry of Health also regulates the qualification and certification of Israel’s doctors and other medical professionals, some of whom have developed a reputation that is known throughout the world. Many of Israel’s physicians and health practitioners have emigrated from European and American countries and are well-trained and adept in Western medicine and procedures. Most Israeli medical practitioners put a high emphasis on further education, enabling them to become experts and super-specialists in their chosen medical fields.
Top Hospitals for Medical Tourism in Israel
- Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center (ICHILOV) – Tel Aviv
Being one of Israel’s most reputable multidisciplinary hospitals, the highly skilled physicians and health care teams of the Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center (Ichilov) are committed to providing excellence in medical care. Our vision is to provide medical excellence that is delivered by the most highly skilled physicians and other health care team members. Our specialists comprise world-class professionals in the field of microsurgery, hematology, neurosurgery, cardiology, oncology, orthopedics, and many more.
- Rambam Medical Center – Haifa
Rambam Health Care Campus (RHCC) is located in Haifa, Israel’s third largest metropolis. The campus is an extraordinary workplace combines 3 world-class facilities on one site: Rambam Medical Center, The Technion (Israel Institute of Technology’s) Ruth and Bruce Rappaport Faculty of Medicine and The Rappaport Family Institute for Research in the Medical Sciences.
- Tel Aviv Assuta Hospital – Tel Aviv
This newly constructed privately-owned medical center was opened to the public in 2009 and is now considered as the most advanced healthcare facility in the Middle East. Medical tourists can stay in private rooms equipped with cable TV, Wi-Fi internet connections and excellent room and personal assistant services. The medical center is owned and operated by the Assuta Medical Group, which includes 5 hospitals and 7 other medical centers in the country.
- Herzliya Medical Center – Herzliya (5 KM from Tel-Aviv)
Herzliya Medical Center is a privately-owned hospital that offers technically advanced medical facilities and services, including complex heart surgeries, neurosurgeries and endoscopic procedures. The medical center is also the first medical institution in Israel to receive full accreditation and certification from Blue Cross Blue Shield of America for medical tourism treatments, procedures and other services.
- Haddasah University Medical Center – Jerusalem
Hadassah Medical is a non-profit organization which operates two hospitals in Jerusalem – Hadassah Ein kerem Hospital and Hadassah Mount Scopus Hospital, both are advanced tertiary care hospitals who serve thousands of medical tourists annually.
- Sheba Medical Center – Tel Hashomer (Tel-Aviv suburb)
The largest medical centre in Israel and the Middle East, internationally renowned for it’s medical excellence. Around 31,000 inpatients are treated annually.
Common Treatments Done by Medical Tourists in Israel
Hospitals and healthcare facilities in Israel offer top of the line procedures and services for medical travelers, including complicated medical procedures and treatment which include but are not limited to the following:
- Cardiac Surgery
- Ear, Nose & Throat surgeries
- General Surgery
- Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery
- Vascular surgery
- Bone marrow transplants
Malpractice and Liability Laws in Israel
In Israel, a medical practitioner can be charged with malpractice if he or she has acted negligently during the treatment of a patient, or if he intentionally neglected to treat a patient. Several law firms in Israel have placed their focus in this growing field, as malpractice cases are much more complex and would require ample evidence and the backing of professional opinion before any claims compensation are awarded.
Patients requiring assistance for malpractice and liability claims in Israel can seek the services of these professionals and law firms. They have ample experience and technical expertise in this field. Malpractice cases can also include diagnosis failures, misdiagnosis, failure to render the correct treatment, and unreasonable delay before treatment is rendered.
· Highly qualified medical professionals
Israel hosts some of the most highly qualified and experienced doctors and surgeons in the world.
· Sophisticated medical technology
The presence and availability of sophisticated medical technology, some of which were developed and perfected in Israel.
· World class medical facilities
The leading hospitals offer world-class medical facilities and equipment
Russian and English are widely spoken by medical personnel
· Prices are higher than in most Asian countries
Prices of medical procedures are high compared to medical tourism destinations such in Asia
· Political concerns
The ongoing conflict with Palestine and other Arab countries is a cause of concern to tourists coming to Israel
· Service levels at public hospitals
Service levels at public hospitals are poor. Private rooms are scarce and the nurse/patient ratio is low compared to medical tourism destinations in Asia.
Traveling to Israel
There are several major airline carriers traveling to Israel
directly from all major cities in Europe and America. Most Arab countries do
not have a direct flight to Israel, but can be reached through Amman,
Entry and Exit Requirements to Israel
Israel has made arrangements and agreements with 65 countries whereby citizens from these countries will no longer require a visa to enter Israel. The only requirement is a valid passport. Most African, Asian and Arab countries need to apply for a Visa through the Israeli embassy in their country.
Statistics of Medical Tourism in Israel
Thousands of medical travelers have visited Israel in the last few years to avail themselves of the sophisticated healthcare and medical procedures that this country has to offer. In 2016, the rate of medical tourists out of all tourists to Israel was 2%. The Medical Tourism market in Israel is valued by the Ministry of Health at 1 Billion ILS ($~280M). In 2014, about 60,000 medical tourist were treated in Israel. In 2013, approximately 30,000 foreign nationals entered the country specifically for various medical treatments. Approximately 50% of these visitors were medical tourists from Russia and Eastern Europe. 65% of medical visitors that came to Israel have undergone various medical treatments, while the remaining 35% pursued cosmetic and aesthetic surgeries and treatments.
Most of these patients came for medical procedures that otherwise would be expensive or not readily available in their home countries. Most of these medical tourists came to Israel for heart surgeries, oncology and cancer treatments and bone marrow transplants. Other medical tourists chose Israel for the country’s reputation in specific branches of medicine, such as in the field of IVF treatment, where Israel is considered a global leader.