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Sapir, Ginsberg Enter Agreement to Provide Israel’s Aged with Comprehensive Care Within Decade

In a major effort to help provide the people of Israel with a comprehensive, professional system of care for the growing number of aged, Israel’s Minister of Finance, Pin-has Sapir, and the chairman of the Joint Distribution Committee, Edward Ginsberg, have concluded an agreement under which JDC/Malben’s institutions, with more than 2000 beds for the aged, will be transferred by April 1, 1973 to the Association for the Planning and Development of Services for the Aged, a national voluntary organization. The institutions, now open only to new immigrants, will be available to all residents of Israel in need of the service.

In a joint announcement, Sapir and Ginsberg stated that the agreement “recognizes the need to overcome the serious shortage of facilities and services for the country’s aged.” The agreement, they said, constitutes a “significant step forward to provide all Israel residents with the same high level of care which JDC/Malben has been offering newcomers to the country since 1949.”

Under the agreement the JDC, beginning on April 1, 1973, will give the Association $22,857,000 over an eight-year period at the rate of $2,857,000 a year. This sum is in addition to the Association’s $8,333,000 development budget, half of which is covered by JDC. Initiated by the JDC, the national Association is now setting up an additional 800 beds in a network of regional institutions for the dual purpose of serving as centers for a variety of services for those aged who remain at home and as homes for those who can no longer care for themselves.

MAJOR NEW JDC PROJECT

A major new project of the JDC programs for the aged in Israel, Ginsberg reported, will be establishing in Jerusalem of a Gerontological Institute which will be devoted to the study of all facets of the problems of the aging and provide training opportunities for professional personnel working with the aged. Affiliated to the Institute will be the necessary research, demonstration and training facilities. The project will involve an expenditure of up to $9,523,000, Ginsberg said.

The JDC’s overall programs for the aged, which, in addition to the Institute and the network of institutions being set up by the Association, include the establishment of additional geriatrics departments at general hospitals and the training of the necessary professional personnel, projects an expenditure until the end of this decade of approximately $35,714,000, the JDC chairman declared.

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