Health Coverage for Non-Resident Citizens
Updated April 2013
Please be aware that the holding of Israeli citizenship does not necessarily entitle a person to medical coverage under the National Health Insurance Law. An Israeli citizen must reside in Israel for a minimum of 182 days in a calendar year to benefit from the law.
Therefore, those who live in Israel on a part-time basis need to pay careful attention to the 182 days – approximately 6 months – requirement.
It is therefore important that all residents of Israel be aware that they may lose their medical insurance if they do not stay in Israel for 182 days or longer each year. Those affected by this rule should continue to keep their medical insurance in their home country, ensuring it covers Israel as well.
The National Insurance Institute (Bituach Leumi) is able to check residency information. Bituach Leumi receives updated reports from the Ministry of Interior (Misrad HaPnim) and has denied health coverage to individuals found not meeting the residency criteria – even though they have been paying regularly to their health funds (Kupot Holim).
To re-establish residency, you must fill out a form for Toshavut through Bituach Leumi. The process may take several months. You may be asked to produce documents that prove your re-entrance into Israeli society such as rental contracts, banking id, school registrations, or other papers. The maximum wait for health care coverage, is 6 months from the date you return to Israel. Please keep in mind that you must pay the health tax to Bituach Leumi during the waiting period.