Health Ministry director general Roni Gamzu has announced his resignation on Friday. Gamzu is stepping down at the height of the Hadassah hospital crisis and also amid a deteriorating relationship with Health Minister Yael German.
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Gamzu will officially resign on June 1, after four years in office. Gamzu was appointed to the position by former Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman, and German decided to keep him in the position.
German and Gamzu had numerous disagreements, primarily over the director general’s relative independence, and tendency to make decisions and set policy without consulting German. Rumors about Gamzu’s possible resignation have been circulating for months. This week, the tension between the two reached a boiling point, and it was decided that Gamzu should step down. Gamzu was considered an especially strong and effective director general, even though he clashed with various officials within the health system from time to time.
Gamzu told TheMarker that “in the coming months, I plan to find a solution to the Hadassah crisis. I will do everything I can to fix the situation by the time I resign. Otherwise, I would be stepping down with a feeling that something big was left unfinished.”
“After four years, I’ve got a strong, clear position in the system, and perhaps it’s actually the relative freedom I had that will bring about a solution for the Hadassah problem," Gamzu said. During his term in the Health Ministry, Gamzu spearheaded the preparation and implementation of numerous long-term projects that have had and will continue to have a positive effect on public health in Israel.
Gamzu’s decision comes as a commission lead by German has been examining possible methods for improving the healthcare system. About two weeks ago, the commission began publishing findings regarding closer supervision on government-run hospitals as well as on private health care dispensed at public facilities. German has said that she asked Gamzu to stay in touch, and consult for her on certain matters.
“I’m sure that Roni has a bright future ahead of him in any position he will choose, and I hope with all my heart he makes good use of the time ahead to rest before beginning to succeed on a new path," she said.