In the event that a drug is included in the healthcare basket the health plans are not obligated to provide the policy holder with a specific drug produced by a specific manufacturer (brand-name drugs). They are only obligated to provide a drug with an identical active ingredient (generic drugs).
- Generic drugs are different than brand-name drugs, which are originally developed by the manufacturer and are patent-protected.
- After a brand-name drug's patent protection expires, other companies may manufacture copies of the drug.
- These copies are called generic drugs and have the same active ingredient and are less expensive then the brand-name version.
- Even if drugs are identical, patients sometimes complain about differences between one generic drug and another.
- In such cases, if a patient took a specific generic drug and the health plan replaced it with a different generic drug, the policyholder may claim that the health plan is obligated to continue providing the original generic drug due to the Principle of Treatment Continuity.
Who is Eligible?
- All Health Insurance policyholders.
How to Claim It?
- Policyholders requesting to obligate the health plan to continue providing a specific generic drug must support their claim that there are differences between the drugs with medical documentation, and submit it to their health plan's ombudsman or the Ministry of Health's National Health Insurance Law Ombudsman.
- There are differences between the health plans regarding which generic drugs are provided. Accordingly, policyholders interested in a specific generic drug may check which health plans provide it. Policyholders may switch health plans if the drug is available through another plan. For more information, see: Switching Health Plans.
- For a comprehensive categorized listing of healthcare organizations offering assistance and support, click here.
- The Ministry of Health
- Ministry of Health - Pharmacological Products Department
- National Health Insurance Law Ombudsman
Laws and Regulations
- The National Health Insurance Law
- National Health Insurance Order (Medications in the Healthcare Services Basket)
- Arrangements for the Use of Generic Drugs in Israel - The Knesset Research and Information Center
- Information on generic drugs on the Society for Patients Rights in Israel website
- Original information written as part of Nili Karako's course at the Mazor Clinical Center - Providing Legal Advice Regarding Patients Rights in Israel.
- English translation and maintenance by The Shira Pransky Project.