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Managing Medication in Israel

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Managing and understanding of medication can be challenging for anyone.  Medication in Israel is not the same as medication in other countries, especially if you are from the United States. 

If you are coming to Israel as a tourist, be sure to bring your medication with you. 

Managing medication in Israel is an important consideration if you are here for a longer stay, whether a tourist, resident, volunteer, or diplomat.   You will need to do research before you arrive, as not every medication is the same when traveling to foreign countries.  

For example, common medications may have different names in Israel.  Even over the counter medicine can be different.  Tylenol or acetaminophen is NOT available in Israel, but Acamol or paracetamol is exactly the same medication.

Understanding the different names and types of medication in Israel is crucial.  This is especially true if you have drug allergies.  And not every physician will be familiar with American or European medication names.

Some differences you will find with Israeli medications:

  • Medication often comes in different doses than what is available in other countries. You may be on 25mg tablets but discover that in Israel only 10mg tablets are available. EMA Care had a client who was on extended-release medication, that only came in short-acting form in Israel.  We arranged for him to get his medication from the US directly!
  • You may need a prescription here for a type of medicine that you do not need a prescription for in the States. For example, many antihistamines are available over-the-counter in the US and Europe but require a physician prescription in Israel.
  • Some medications may not be available in Israel. This is pretty rare, but we have encountered situations where some medication is simply unavailable in Israel. In these cases, we recommend that long-term visitors either change to a locally available medication or arrange to bring in medication from their country of origin.
  • Prescription medications are less expensive (compared to the US), over-the-counter medications are MUCH more expensive and come in very small quantities. For this reason, EMA Care recommends that visitors bring over-the-counter medication with them.
  • Medication in Israel generally does NOT come in child-resistant containers, with the exception of certain liquid children’s medication. I have had clients whose children overdosed on pills that they thought were candies! If you live with small children, EMA Care recommends placing all medication in out-of-reach places or purchasing child-resistance containers.  If you purchase containers, tape the medication label and expiration date to the new bottle. 

EMA Care can work with you in advance of your visit to Israel.  EMA Care will do the research for you. Contact EMA Care in advance of your trip, to prevent a medication crisis during your time in Israel. 

EMA Care provides medical concierge, case management, and patient advocacy services to tourists, students, and residents of Israel. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation.
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