Diplomatist Special Report: West Asia - North Africa 2018 WANA 2018 - Page 33

SPECIAL REPORT The need of the cooperation with Israel on healthcare could be understood with the fact that healthcare in Israel is universal and participation in a medical insurance plan is compulsory. All Israeli residents are entitled to basic health care as a fundamental right. interests, exchanging of specialists for the purpose of study and consultations, encouraging cooperation between institutions and organisations between India and Israel. Also, both countries exchange information on new equipment, pharmaceutical products and technological developments related to medicine and public health. Such other forms of cooperation in the fi elds of medicine and public health also exist. The need of the cooperation with Israel on healthcare could be understood with the fact that, healthcare in Israel is universal and participation in a medical insurance plan is compulsory. All Israeli residents are entitled to basic healthcare as a fundamental right. The Israeli healthcare system is based on the National Health Insurance Law of 1995, which mandates all citizens resident in the country to join one of four offi cial health insurance organizations, known as KupotHolim which are run as not-for-profit organizations and are prohibited by law from denying any Israeli resident membership. In a survey of 48 countries in 2013, Israel's health system was ranked fourth in the world in terms of effi ciency, and in 2014 it ranked seventh out of 51. In 2015, Israel was ranked sixth-healthiest country in the world by Bloomberg rankings and ranked eighth in terms of life expectancy. Similarly, with Palestine in May 2017, India established an inter-ministerial and inter-institutional cooperation in the fi eld of healthcare by pooling technical, scientifi c, fi nancial, and human resources with the ultimate goal of upgrading the quality and reach of human, material and infrastructural resources that involves medical education, training and research. Since 1967, there have been improvements in the access to healthcare and the overall general health conditions for residents, in the Palestinian territories. Advances in training increased access to state-of-the-art medical technology, and various governmental provisions have allowed per-capita funding to increase, and therefore the overall health of residents in the region to increase. Additionally, the enhanced access to and funding from international organizations like the World Health Organization, the United Nations, the Palestinian Ministry of Health, and the World Bank Education and Health Rehabilitation Project have contributed to the current state of affairs within the healthcare segment of the Palestinian territories. India too is cooperating with Ramallah in the major areas which include capacity building of health staff, prevention and control of communicable diseases, physiotherapy and rehabilitation, drug, pharmaceutical and medical equipment. Moving towards North Africa, India signed an MoU with Egypt on healthcare cooperation in 2008, which resulted in the bilateral cooperation between two nations on the medical equipment and pharmaceutical products, hospital management, telemedicine, primary healthcare, exchanging experiences in the fi eld of population, vaccine, surveillance on emerging diseases, and sharing the results in the fi eld of medical education. Healthcare in Egypt consists of both public and private sectors. Public health coverage is offered through Ministry of Health, which operates a series of medical facilities providing free health services. There are two main private insurers. The Health Insurance Organization covers employed persons, students, and widows through premiums deducted from employee salaries and employer payrolls. It operates its own network of medical facilities and at times contracts with private healthcare providers. The Curative Care Organization operates in specifi c governorates, and contracts with other entities for the provision of care. There are also private insurance options and a network of private healthcare providers and medical facilities. Many mosques also operate their own clinics, especially in the large cities. Understanding the need of higher cooperation both India and Egypt established a 'Follow Up Group' , which is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the MoU. This group meets regularly to explore the vast opportunities to work, on the poor healthcare system and create an advanced and proactive channel of cooperation between two states. * Nigar Dilawar is a healthcare & hospitality management scholar. Her research areas include Healthcare in the war- torn zone. Her thesis was carried out on the child healthcare in the Syrian territories. West Asia-North Africa• 33