Israeli hospitals face shortage of COVID medications

Healthcare experts say shortage created due to inadequate preparedness and flawed predictions by health authorities during the current winter COVID-19 season

Following budgetary disputes and inaccurate forecasts Israeli hospitals face a shortage of COVID-19 medications and some patients were not receiving the necessary medications, while others have a limited supply lasting only a few more days, Ynet learned on Tuesday.
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The primary treatment being withheld from patients is Remdesivir, which is currently not included in the approved list of medications. Discussions regarding its inclusion are taking place within committee deliberations. The underlying cause of the disagreement stems from the Finance Ministry's reluctance to allocate a dedicated budget for these medications.
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חיסוני קורונה
חיסוני קורונה
COVID-19 vaccines
(Photo: EPA)
In response, the Health Ministry contends that the funds for purchasing and distributing these medications should be sourced from the existing budget already allocated to them. "There is a shortage," stated a representative from one of the hospitals. "There is strict oversight and private approval by an infectious diseases specialist for each supply."
According to healthcare experts, another reason for the shortage is inadequate preparedness and flawed predictions by health authorities during the current winter COVID-19 season.
"There is a significant increase in COVID-19 cases, leading to numerous hospitalizations," one treating physician said. "In the past, the information put forth by the Health Ministry was reliable, but currently, it is not. In every hospital, there are hospitalized patients, and at any given moment, there are patients receiving intensive care treatment for COVID-19. There is no panic or crisis, but there are quite a few patients at the moment, and new patients are arriving at hospitals every day."
In response, the Finance Ministry stated, "The Health Ministry received budgets in the past year amounting to approximately NIS two billion for various flexible needs, providing them with a source for this until a decision is made by the drug basket committee."
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