Overview of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in Israel

The mental health care system in Israel is undergoing a historic reform, which will create a legal entitlement to mental health care and transfer responsibility for the provision of mental health services from the government to the four national, nonprofit health plans. At the request of the Israeli government, MJB is playing a central role in designing and carrying out the evaluation of this reform.

In this context, the current report focuses on child and adolescent mental health services (CAMH) in Israel, providing an overview of the current situation along with an analysis of how the services might be strengthened.

The specific goals of the overview are:

  1. To review the organization of services in other countries
  2. To review the different types of services that are available to children and their families in Israel
  3. To analyze the nature of the staffing of services and of the training provided
  4. To explore the organizational relationships both within, and between, the health, social service and education sectors
  5. To assess the degree to which there is duplication and repetition of services across the different sectors
  6. To consider the strengths and challenges of the CAMH system as a whole, as well as those of the services that were encountered, with special attention to the extent to which children’s needs are being met.

The information was collected between January and October 2010 via a series of in-depth interviews with approximately 50 professionals and managers from the health, education and social service sectors.

The study’s findings are expected to serve as an important input into efforts to implement the new mental health care reform. In particular, the study provides valuable background information for efforts to increase the availability of high quality services for children, and greater coordination among those services, within the framework of the reform.

The study was funded with the assistance of a grant from Michael and Andrea Dubroff of Massachusetts, USA.

Citing suggestion: Sterne, A., & Porter, B. (2013). Overview of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in Israel. RR-644-13. Myers-JDC-Brookdale Institute. (Hebrew)