Israeli doctors oppose “black medicine” bill

BMJ 1995; 311 doi: (Published 30 September 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;311:831
  1. JUDY SIEGEL-ITZKOVICH, medical correspondent
  1. Jerusalem Post

    The Israel Medical Association has criticised a new government bill that could make it a criminal act for a doctor to accept from a patient an “under the table” fee in exchange for preferential treatment. Known as the Black Medicine Bill, it will soon be presented to the parliament at the initiative of Health Minister Dr Ephraim Sneh.

    Under existing laws, doctors who accept money illicitly and give special or speedier treatment or agree to treat a patient outside the regular duty roster violate civil laws. Sometimes doctors solicit “contributions” from patients to their department's research fund; the money is either pocketed by the department heads or divided among a wider circle of doctors to cover the cost of medical conferences abroad. In other cases a doctor may invite the patient home and explain the “risks” …

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