State to expand subsidized drugs, totaling NIS 550 million

The Health Ministry announced Wednesday that it would expand the so-called subsidized “drug basket” that helps Israelis pay for many drugs, life-saving emerging drugs and health technologies.

A committee submitted its recommendations to Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz, which included drugs and technologies worth NIS 550 million ($175.5 million) for 2022.

“Committee members have done an incredible job,” Horowitz said in a statement, adding that the funded treatments included “ultra-advanced drugs and technologies in the areas of mental health, rehabilitation, treatment funding innovative cancer treatments, treatments for transgender people, lowering the prices of PrEP, adding another drug for HIV patients and helping a very wide range of people.

According to information from Channel 12, state-funded treatments for transgender people will also include voice therapy worth 2 million shekels ($638 million).

The director-general of the ministry, Nachman Ash, said he hoped that next year a larger budget would be allocated to the “drug basket” to meet the needs of more patients.

“We have done everything possible to ensure that the citizens of the country receive the technologies that should be included in the basket as soon as possible,” said committee coordinator Dr. Osnat Luxenburg.

Israel’s annual health budget is about 44 billion shekels ($14 billion).

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