Living in the periphery? You have a greater chance of being hospitalized: A study by the Ministry of Health found that while the number of hospitalizations has declined over the past decade throughout the country and in all age and gender groups, its rate in the periphery is still higher than in the Tel Aviv and central districts.
According to the study, which examined health gaps between the center of the country and the periphery, the hospitalization rate (excluding maternity) declined by 21% nationwide between 2021 and 2010. However, in contrast to the decline of 25% in the central and Tel Aviv districts, the decline recorded in the north, south and Judea and Samaria was lower: of 22%-19%. The hospitalization rate in the Jerusalem District is relatively stable.
Data on the chances of hospitalization,
The study also found that hospitalization rates in 2021 were 20-15 per cent higher than the national average in the Acre, Safed and Yizreel governorates; 12-6 per cent in Hadera, Ashkelon, Hasharon and Be'er Sheva governorates; and 4 per cent in the Kinneret and Haifa governorates. In contrast, hospitalization rates in Judea and Samaria, Jerusalem and Petah Tikva governorates were lower than average.
HMOs and Hospitals Policy
Similar trends emerged by age in 2021: hospitalization rates among those aged 65 and over were 21-15 per cent higher than average in the Ashkelon, Acre and Yizreel governorates; and 12-7 per cent in Beersheba, Hadera, Safed and Ramle governorates. The full study will be presented at the annual conference of the Israel National Institute for Health Policy Research.
According to researchers Irena Lifshitz and Ziona Haklai of the Health Ministry's Information Division, "Israel's situation in hospitalization rates per capita is relatively good, compared to international indicators. However, hospitalization rates in the periphery remain higher than in the center. In fact, a correlation was found between high socioeconomic status and low hospitalization rates."
The hypothesis is that the differences between the center and the periphery depend, among other things, on variables such as the multiplicity of medical services in community clinics, different policies of the health funds and hospitals, and perhaps also different morbidity rates.
"It is important to give decision makers a reliable reflection of the situation," the researchers note. "We must continue to examine the reasons for these trends, including examining medical services in the community, morbidity rates, health plans and hospitals, and more."
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