A First Step Towards Healing: A New Agreement For Psychologists in the Public Health System
The Histadrut negotiated a comprehensive plan with the Ministries of Finance and Health to provide grants for psychologists working in the public health system. The initiative, with a total cost in the millions, aims to address the urgent need for expanded mental health services during the ongoing crisis and is a key component of the national mental health plan.
Under the outlined plan, public health system employees will be eligible for grants totaling thousands of shekels annually. The program includes incentives for psychologists to remain in the public sector and additional grants to encourage them to expand their roles within it. Special recruitment incentives are also allocated for psychologists entering the public health system during the outlined period.
The grants, varying based on qualification levels and position, will significantly increase treatment hours and enhance the overall response to mental health challenges. The initiative is a crucial step toward strengthening the public psychology system in Israel, but it is merely a step.
A recent research published by Forum Arlozorov shows that the health system lacks 27.1 billion shekels annually to reach the average OECD expense. Similarly, Israel is 5.4 billion shekels behind OECD average expense on welfare services.
Chairman of the Histadrut (Israeli Labor Federation), Arnon Bar-David, said: “The healing process of Israeli society begins with our ability to support the victims and ensure effective and long-term therapeutic responses. The national effort to deal with the trauma of war highlights the urgent need to continue investing in the public psychology system in Israel. The grant program for psychologists in the health system is a crucial and significant first step, but the mission does not end there. We will continue to act with determination and cooperation with all stakeholders to strengthen the public system and ensure its ability to provide quality psychological services that are available and accessible to all citizens in need.”
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