Before taking up his current job as Alon Israel Oil Company Ltd. CEO, Avigdor Kaplan was asked to manage Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, which was in a deep financial crisis, with a NIS 1.3 billion debt. Kaplan yesterday criticized the Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America and the Ministry of Finance because of the latter's decision to appoint an advisory accountant for the hospital, which he said had caused him to leave the hospital. "The women of Hadassah are saints, and like to give large amounts of money, but they don't know where to stop - where philanthropy ends and management begins. If you ask all the Hadassah Medical Center directors, those who are still living, they'll tell you how much they suffered from interference in the process of regular management.
"At a certain stage, the women of Hadassah, who understood nothing, joined forces with the state and decided that there would be an advisory accountant," Kaplan continued. "I said that I had never seen this style of management, in which the director responsible for life and death at a hospital has an advisor, a quasi-bodyguard, who with one word can come and make decisions. I said that it didn't suit me, and I left."
Kaplan added that Hadassah had inflated salaries and a faulty organizational culture, one example of which was five doctors' committees, a nurses committee, and an administrative and non-medical staff committee.
Kaplan also implied criticism of wasted resources and unnecessary tests on patients by the hospitals. He compared an ordinary consumer to a patient consumer, who "knows nothing." He said that the hospitals take advantage of this situation to carry out superfluous tests on patients and inflate the system's expenses. "We'll send you for an unnecessary MRI, an unnecessary CT, and unnecessary lab tests. We'll bring you for repeated doctor's appointments, or to someone paid per visit, so why not? We'll inflate expenses, so that for years the relationship between the hospitals and the health funds has been such that the hospitals had plenty of money and the health funds were in trouble."
According to Kaplan, in an effort to solve the problem, the Ministry of Finance had discriminated against Hadassah in the distribution of resources, and that Hadassah had been caught napping.
Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America said in response, "We were disappointed and puzzled after reading the words of Avigdor Kaplan who left the hospital during a very difficult period. We are amazed that he has seen fit to express himself so incorrectly on the role of Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America, which is the owner of the hospital and was expected to donate the money and not ask any questions. This is of course was not the situation."
"In its more than 100 years of existence, Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America has set up the health infrastructures in the State of Israel as well as Hadassah Medical Center, and invested billions of dollars and continues to invest in Hadassah's hospitals for the State of Israel and its citizens. Hadassah's hospitals, owned by Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America including the new hospital tower, always stand in the forefront of medicine, and all areas of medicine and the general public have gained and are gaining from this."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on April 29, 2015
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