Healthcare in Beit Shemesh
Whether you already live in Beit Shemesh or want to move there soon, access to healthcare is one of the most important things to check and have sorted out. After all, you’re in a foreign country and want to know the process and available healthcare institutions in case you require medical attention.
This article will help you with just that as we discuss healthcare options for expats in Beit Shemesh.
What Are the Major Hospitals and Medical Centers in Beit Shemesh That Cater to English-Speaking Residents?
Beit Shemesh is located just 30 km from Jerusalem. The city has grown immensely in the last 50 years. Back in 1972, the city had around 10,000 residents. Today, Beit Shemesh is home to over 110,000 people, including many English-speaking residents.
Healthcare in Israel
Before discussing the major hospitals and clinics that Beit Shemesh hosts, it’s important to understand how health insurance in Beit Shemesh (and the entire country) works. Namely, Israel provides universal healthcare coverage to its citizens and permanent residents. This universal package covers services like hospital, maternity, primary, specialty, mental health care, and prescription drugs. The healthcare system is funded by taxes (national income tax and income-related health tax).
In Israel people can choose one of four nonprofit healthcare plans (networks):
Every plan offers similar services, but there are minor differences that can help you opt for the right plan. In Beit Shemesh, you can find hospitals belonging to each of the above-mentioned four networks. If you’re wondering which plan to choose, it’s best to consult with the employees from each organization. They’ll help you understand your options and make the best decision.
Healthcare Clinics in Beit Shemesh
In Beit Shemesh, you can find hospitals belonging to each of the above-mentioned four networks. If you’re not a resident yet, you can go to one of the many private clinics in the city.
Here are some Some of the popular emergency and primary healthcare clinics in Beit Shemesh:
- LaBriut (Nachal Arugot St 6)
- Meuhedet Medical Center (Nachal Tze’elim Ave 2-8)
- Leumit Healthcare Services (Havakuk HaNavi St. 11)
- Dr. Adi Neuman (Rav Hirsch 1)
Are There Specialized Healthcare Providers in Beit Shemesh Who Can Communicate Effectively With English Speakers?
If you google “accessible healthcare for English speakers Beit Shemesh,” you’ll see plenty of options. Many medical facilities in Beit Shemesh have functional websites, but they’re in Hebrew. Even when there’s an option to switch the website to English, you’ll still see most of the options and tabs in Hebrew. This can be an obstacle for English speakers who aren’t fluent in Hebrew.
Fortunately, the situation is different when you go to a clinic or hospital. Israel’s healthcare system is quite modern compared to other countries, and many doctors receive training outside the country (many in the U.S.). Thanks to this, there are plenty of English speaking doctors in Beit Shemesh.
In general it’s safe to say that most (not all) doctors in Israel have no problems communicating in English with their patients. The same goes for other medical staff; you’ll generally have no trouble explaining what you need. And even in a case where the medical professional that you’re dealing with was domestically trained and doesn’t understand or speak English, they’ll be able to easily reach someone who does and can assist you.
What Services and Treatments Are Available in the Healthcare Facilities in Beit Shemesh?
The basic services covered in every plan are:
- Hospital care
- Primary and specialty healthcare providers
- Preventive services
- Prescription drugs
- Dental care (for children and seniors)
- Mental health care
- Maternity care
- Physiotherapy, speech therapy, nutrition, occupational therapy
- Medical equipment (wheelchairs or orthopedic aids)
- Palliative and hospice services (partially covered)
Note that breastfeeding guidance, means-tested institutional long-term care, and infant developmental screenings and vaccinations are also covered. These are covered by the Ministry of Health, not by national health insurance.
Some people may want more options than the ones covered by public insurance. Or, they may wish to have more amenities and shorter wait times. If this interests you, you can always get private insurance.
How Can English-Speaking Residents Find English-Speaking Doctors in Beit Shemesh?
As mentioned, many doctors in Beit Shemesh (and the entire country) speak English. However, it’s possible to come across doctors who don’t. In such cases, proper communication is virtually impossible, and you may not get the treatment you need due to the language barrier.
Fortunately, there are several ways to find English-speaking doctors in Beit Shemesh. The first action you can take is to do a Google search. You’ll likely come across reviews from other English-speaking residents who’ve seen English-speaking doctors in Beit Shemesh. Besides helping you find an English-speaking doctor, these reviews can provide insight into the quality of services the patients receive.
Another way to find an English-speaking physician is to reach out to one of many English-speaking communities or support groups. They can help you find the best doctor and adjust to your new life in Beit Shemesh with ease.
You can also ask around your neighborhood. The English-speaking residents who live nearby will likely be helpful for a recommendation. You can do the same with your friends or coworkers.
Whatever option you choose, finding an English-speaking doctor in Beit Shemesh shouldn’t be too difficult.
What Is the Process for Accessing Healthcare Services in Beit Shemesh as an English Speaker?
The process depends on several factors. For example, if you’re a permanent resident, the state of Israel treats you the same way as locals; you’re entitled to public healthcare and can choose one of the four providers we discussed above. You can register at the National Insurance Institute’s website or head down to a post office branch to complete the process.
If you’re working in Beit Shemesh, your employer will likely take care of your health insurance. You can purchase supplementary insurance or opt for an additional private health insurance plan if you’d like to have more services covered.
If you’re a digital nomad, international health insurance might be worth considering.
Are There Any Specific Health Insurance Options Available for English-Speaking Residents in Beit Shemesh?
If you’re a resident, you have the same rights as locals, meaning you can enjoy the healthcare options available to everyone. Israel offers universal healthcare to all its residents.
In many other countries, people opt for private health insurance plans because they get better-quality services. In Israel, the difference between public and private health insurance systems isn’t really about quality. Here, people opt for private insurance either due to shorter wait times or to get specific services that aren’t included in public health insurance packages.
Anglos who aren’t residents can always get private health insurance.
How Do Emergency Medical Services Function in Beit Shemesh, and What Should English-Speaking Residents Know About Accessing Emergency Care?
Most hospitals and clinics have after-care emergency departments ready to assist. Plus, all four health plans have phone advice lines where you can get help.
The nationally-recognized emergency medical services organization in Israel is Magen David Adom. The organization has over 22,000 volunteers and 2,500 employees. It has great response times and is available in Beit Shemesh.
Emergency services Beit Shemesh are well-organized, and you can get the necessary service within minutes.
Are There Any Support Groups or Resources Available for English-Speaking Residents Dealing With Specific Health Conditions in Beit Shemesh?
Dealing with a disease or a health condition can often be challenging (both physically and mentally). Many feel better when talking to someone going through the same or similar experience.
We weren’t able to find any information about official support groups for English-speaking residents dealing with specific health conditions in Beit Shemesh. However, that doesn’t mean Anglos don’t get any support. Many English-speaking residents in Beit Shemesh use social media groups to discuss various topics, including health. You can join one of these groups and see whether you can find someone with the same condition.
All four public health insurance plans cover mental health. So, you can talk about your condition with a trained professional who will help you clear your head and focus on the good.
What Is the General Quality of Healthcare Services in Beit Shemesh, and How Do They Compare to Other Areas?
As a large city, Beit Shemesh offers plenty of healthcare options, so it’s up to you to choose the plan you like best. Overall, people in Beit Shemesh are satisfied with their public health insurance plans. They like the range of services available and the doctors’ professionalism.
The only thing some people don’t like is the waiting times. During peak hours, you may have to wait a long time before seeing a doctor.
Are There Any Recommendations or Testimonials From English-Speaking Residents in Beit Shemesh Regarding Their Experiences With Healthcare Services?
All four healthcare insurance plans available in Israel are popular among English-speaking residents, so no plan stands out as the best. All of them offer the same services (required by law), but the availability of the plans differs across the country. Since Beit Shemesh is a big city, you have all four options available.
There are subtle differences in how the plans work in practice. Before opting for one, getting more information about all four is best to see which option ticks all the boxes. You can also ask your friends, coworkers, and neighbors for assistance and recommendations.
Take Care of Healthcare Services Beit Shemesh
English-speaking residents are often surprised by how well the healthcare system in Israel functions. Both the public and private healthcare sectors are well-developed and advanced and offer excellent coverage. English-speaking residents can get the same health insurance as locals. You can also get public insurance and add extra coverage if you want.
Communication is often the biggest issue for English-speaking residents. Beit Shemesh doctors and medical staff typically speak English, so you’ll don’t have to worry about that.
If you’re not a permanent resident, you can always purchase private health insurance in Israel or international health insurance if you travel often.