National Insurance (Social Security ), pensions , rights and benefits:
Up to retirement age National Insurance rights depend on the patient’s age and functional condition. It is best to visit the nearest National Insurance office as soon as possible in order to inquire about the patient’s rights. In many cases, various entitlement procedures can be initiated even before full release from the rehab facility.
If the stroke occurred at work or was connected to the person’s work, this should be mentioned at the hospital, and the fact should be noted in the release letter, which serves as a professional opinion for legal purposes. A claim to the National Insurance Institution for an industrial accident must be filed up to a year after the stroke. As this claim is complex, it is recommended to seek legal advice prior to contacting the Institution. The way National Insurance forms are filled in is extremely important, as these serve as legal documents.
- Disability pension: is paid up to retirement age to patients whose earning ability has been reduced by disability. Entitlement to disability pension begins to be calculated 90 days after the stroke. This is done after documents are submitted and the patient’s disability rate is determined by a medical committee, who in the same document establishes both medical disability and loss of working capacity (expressed as a percentage of functional disability). The disability pension rate is established by weighting medical disability and degree of loss of working capacity. Sometimes additional benefits are also received. Pensions for patients re quiring the assistance of another Two pensions are available to assist those who require the assistance of another person in their daily activities and/or constant supervision.
- Patient prior to retirement age – special services pension: paid up to retirement age to those requiring the assistance of another person in their daily activities or constant supervision. In order to approve this pension, the dependence rate in performing 5 basic actions is tested (mobility, bathing, eating, hygiene, dressing). If the patient requires constant assistance and supervision and is released back home, they are entitled to an immediate special services pension, subject to filling in the test form and obtaining the National Insurance Institutrion’s approval.
- Patient after retirement age – nursing pension: paid to those who have reached retirement age, are living in the community (at home or independently in protected accommodations) and require assistance in daily actions (dressing, bathing, eating, walking around the house, etc.). It is also paid to elderly people who require supervision to prevent them from posing a hazard to themselves or the environment (for example, people suffering from cognitivedecline such as alzheimer, who may pose a risk to themselves or the environment when left alone). The person entitled to this pension will select services out of the existing service basket: home care, visiting a day facility, supply of adult diapers, emergency transmitter and laundry services. The pension is paid based on income and functional condition. The claim form for the nursing pension must be submitted at the nearest National Insurance office. It can also be submitted by post, fax or via the office’s service box. The claim can also be filed by another person representing the patient (family member, guardian, social worker or nurse). The claim form must include the attending physician’s opinion, and income confirmations must be attached. After filing the claim, the claim clerk will check if you meet the initial entitlement requirements. If you do, an assessor on behalf of the National Insurance Institution will set an appointment at your home, to inspect your functional abilities.
- Dependent persons benefit: an addition to the disability pension for a spouse who is unemployed or earns low wages (based on an income test), and for two children (only) under the age of 18.
- Mobility pension: paid up to retirement age, and is the same for men and women (for accurate information concerning age, please see the National Insurance website). A mobility pension provides benefits to anyone suffering from neurological disorders and/or impaired blood flow in the legs limiting their mobility. According to the degree of mobility established by the Health Ministry’s mobility committee based on the law, grants, discounts and loans are provided for purchasing a new car and special devices, and a monthly mobility pension is paid to car owners / non car owners.
- Exemption from National Insurance payments: a person paid a disability pension who has no other income is exempt from National Insurance payments so long as they are on the pension, except for a reduced health insurance payment to the HMO deducted from the pension. A person with at least 75% inability to earn, for at least one year, is exempt from National Insurance payments even if they have additional income, except for a reduced health insurance payment to the HMO deducted from the pension, even if they work or are required to pay. Details can be obtained at the collection department of the National Insurance Institution.Entitlement to professional rehab at the National Insurance Institution: if a medical committee has established at least 20% permanent medical disability for the patient, they are entitled to professional rehab, provided that the disorder is preventing them from performing their job or other suitable work, and they require vocational training in order to go back to their former work or work in some other suitable occupation.
- Rehab pension and other payments: if you are on a full disability pension, you will not be entitled to a rehab pension. If you are on a partial disability pension, your pension will be complemented up to the amount paid for 100% disability, based on your familial composition. If you are not on a disability pension, then during the training period you will be entitled to a rehab pension according to the amount paid for 75% disability or more, based on your familial composition. The rehab pension will be paid if you study at least 20 hours a week. If a patient cannot undergo professional rehab, the spouse’s entitlement to prefessional rehab will be examined.
- Professional rehab for sufferers of industrial accidents: if at least 10% disability has been established as a result of an industrial accident, and you are unable to go back to work or work at another suitable job, and have been found suitable for professional rehab, you can learn a new profession that fits your qualifications and employment market demands, through the National Insurance’s rehab services. If in the opinion of the Institution’s physician your work can pose a risk to your health or to safety at your workplace, you can be entitled to professional rehab even if your disability is less than 10%.
- Choosing and training in a profession: choosing a profession and any training will be determined in coordination with the rehab clerk. If your disability is higher than 65%, you were found to qualify for a higher education institution, and have chosen to train in a profession, you will be entitled to (full or partial) funding of your bachelor’s degree studies.
- Rehab pension and other benefits: in the course of your vocational training, the National Insurance Institution will pay you a rehab pension, your tuition, the costs of any learning aids and travel expenses.
- Rate of rehab pension: if your disability is 20% or higher, you will be entitled to a monthly disability pension determined by your rate of disability. However, during your studies, your pension will be increased to the disability pension that would have been paid to you if your disability were 100%.If your disability is 19% or less and your are only entitled to a one-time grant, during your studies you will be paid a monthly pension at the rate that would have been paid to you for 100% disability. If you have any other income from an occupation in the period of your professional training, the rehab clerk will be permitted to deduct it (fully or partially) from your rehab pension – based on your economic condition and the chances to increase your income after training. If you work as a salaried employee during your training period, you will only be paid the amount deducted from your wage as a result of being absent from work for training, so long as this amount does not exceed the rehab pension.
- How do I apply for professional rehab? At your nearest National Insurance office, by filling in a professional rehab claim form. The application should be filed within a year of having been assigned a rate of permanent work disability, attaching confirmation of disability and lack of work capacity rates.
The Ministry of Welfare Rights:
The Ministry has a rehab division that provides disabled people from birth to the age of 65 with rehab services through social services departments at the local authorities and through various public organizations. These services include developing functional skills in various areas of life in order to achieve maximum autonomy and independence.
- Community services: recreational services – activities suited to the patient’s age, disability type and functional capability.
- Care outside of the home: finding housing solutions based on functionality level – dormitories, foster families and protected accommodations.
- Occupational rehab: has the purpose of assisting the person to rejoin the labor force, improve their quality of life and self-image, and provide them with an income-producing occupation. This is done through diagnosis, professional training, open market work placement and protected or supported employment. A handicapped person will be referred to professional rehab services by the local social services department, the National Insurance Institution, health organizations (HMO, hospital), the Jewish Agency, the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption, the government employment agency or private organizations.
Additional Benefits :
- Discounts on property tax: a local authority is permitted to provide disabled people and senior citizens with discounts on property tax based on various criteria established by the specific local authority, such as disability rate and personal economic condition. A disabled person applying for such discount should contact their local authority’s collection unit and fill in a property tax discount application form. A confirmation by the National Insurance and documents providing evidence of their economic condition and disability must be attached.
- Discounts on public transportation: a disabled person being paid a disability pension by the National Insurance based on a stable incapacity rate of at least 75%, and anyone being paid a general disability pension who are also paid a guaranteed minimal income, may be entitled to a 33% discount on public transportation. The discount only applies to multiple-entry tickets. Some lines do not provide a discount. A public transportation discount entitlement certificate will be sent automatically about a month after the disability pension is first paid. For additional information please contact the Public Transportation Division, 8 Hamelaka Street, POB 57109 Tel Aviv 61570.
- Discount on Bezeq’s phone services: anyone being paid a general disability pension based on a rate of at least 80% is eligible for a discount on Bezeq’s telephone services. An application form must be filled in (can be found on Bezeq’s website), attaching a photocopy of your ID card, National Insurance confirmations, photocopy of your last telephone bill, and rental contract when applicable. The documents should be forwarded to the Rehab Division of the Ministry of Welfare.
- HMO: whoever is being paid a general disability pension is exempt from payment for visiting an internal doctor or specialist, for hospital obligation and for visiting institutes and outpatient clinics. The exemption is automatic, based on lists forwarded to the HMO’s by the National Insurance.
- Income tax exemption: if your disability rate is at least 90% for at least 6 months, you are entitled to income tax exemption. The exemption is granted at any age regardless of retirement age. A person injured by a medical incident whose disability rate has yet to be determined, or a person unable to apply for disability at the National Insurance (due to age or income), can apply (for a fee) to a combined income tax and National Insurance medical committee, and will be exempt from income tax if the committee approves. Please contact your district tax assessment officer to applyIsrael Land Administration: disabled people are entitled to exemption from various fees in recording actions and transactions relating to real estate. Applications should be filed at one of the land registration offices around the country, attaching confirmations of disability.
- Employing a foreign caregiver: The claim is done through special forms that can be obtained on the Population Authority’s website, at the permit unit, at the National Insurance Institution, or from the social worker at the hospital ward. A recommendation for a license to employ a foreign caregiver can be obtained directly from the hospital. When the approvals are obtained, contact a company that provides nursing services. The funds to which the patient is entitled based on the Nursing Law will be forwarded to the caregiver through the nursing company. The family will only be required to pay the balance for the caregiver’s cost and pay the nursing company it’s commission. Attach to the claim form an application for an approval to employ a foreign worker, the attending physician’s confirmation on the claim form, medical documents from the attending specialist, and a National Insurance confirmation of hours of home care (if you have one).
- Please note : It is best to employ a worker via a well known company that can guarantee the worker’s health condition and permits you to select the worker’s gender and spoken languages and replace him or her as needed. If you are dissatisfied with the services of one company, you can switch to another. In serious cases you can apply for the concurrent employment of two foreign caregivers.
- Tailoring the apartment to the patient’s needs: people with motion disability can be provided with assistance in adjusting their apartment and access ways to it. Improving housing conditions for those with motion disability is done via a combined committee of the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Housing. The purpose of this committee is to assist in adjusting the apartment of citizens who are disabled as a result of a disease or injured motor system – and in providing ways of access. Disability is determined by an established medical institution: the HMO’s, a hospital or a rehab facility. Assistance is provided by the Ministry of Housing as per the Ministry’s procedure. Establishing entitlement and preparing the documents is done with the assistance of the health system – the health bureaus and HMO’s. Please contact the social worker at the chronic disease department of the Ministry of Health, as well as your HMO, to coordinate a visit by an occupational therapist or authorized rehab worker. When all required documents are submitted, your application will be forwarded to the Ministry of Housing via the social worker at the health bureau. The inter-ministry committee convenes once a month and establishes the rate of the assistance and its components (grant and loan, or loan only). No retroactive reimbursement will be made.
- Physical aids and mobility: the Ministry of Health partially funds rehab, mobility and walking aids for those suffering from permanent disability and living in the community. The degree of funding by the Ministry of Health is 75% of the cost of the physical aid, as determined based on the type of aid. The deductible is 25% (except for instances of exemption). To obtain such funding, attach the following documents to the application:
- Medical report signed by a doctor.
- Recommendation letter by a physical and/or occupational therapist from your HMO.
- Functional nursing report signed by a nurse.
- Social report signed by a social worker.
- Other documents may be requested as needed.
Please note: it is recommended to check with the regional health bureau prior to beginning the procedure. Submitting the documents to the health bureaus can be done by the HMO or directly by the patient / their representative. The application is submitted to the physical aid coordinator at the chronic disease and rehab department of your nearest health bureau. Additionally, some charity organizations lend such equipment as needed, such as Yad Sarah, Ezer Lemarpeh, etc.
- Driver’s license: a person who has suffered a stroke causing an alteration of their condition that can affect their ability to drive, is required by law to report this to the Vehicle Licensing Bureau and Ministry of Health. The person should contact the Ministry of Health’s Road Safety Medical Institute to have their actual driving capability assessed and obtain a recommendation to either have their license continued, require special conditions to be met, or revoke it. Telephone numbers: 04-8633555 or 03-5634702. There are several occupational therapy institutes that can provide you with assistance, advice and a driving assessment (for a fee): at the Beilinson, Bnei Zion and Sheba hospitals.
- Handicapped parking badge: an application form will need to be filled in and sent with the required documents to the Ministry of Transportation’s unit for handling people with limited mobility: P.O.B 72 Holon 58100. To inquire about the status of your application, call the Vehicle Licensing Bureau’s call center at *5678. For more information, see the Ministry of Transportation’s website: Licensing and supervision > Licensing vehicles > Handicapped parking badge.
- Assistance with train transportation: a disabled person in a wheelchair is entitled to assistance in accessing a train. Contact Israel Railways at least 12 hours prior to boarding time, for assistance in getting into / out of the train with a wheelchair lift and to reserve a seat in an accessible car. Call our information center at *5770. In urgent cases call 03-6117020.