Israel’s Health Minister Meets With Counterparts During U.S. Visit
NEW YORK – The United States and Israeli governments signed on Tuesday an historic Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on cooperation in the fields of health, medicine and science.
Israel’s Minister of Health Yaakov Litzman, who’s on a visit to the U.S., accompanied by Ambassador Ron Dermer, and Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Sylvia Burwell took part in the signing ceremony in Washington, DC.
The MOU affirms the two sides’ desire to strengthen cooperation across a broad range of mutual fields of interests, addressing issues and challenges that are common to both nations, and which affect the lives of millions of Israelis and Americans.
Litzman, 67, the first Haredi cabinet minister for decades and head of the ultra-Orthodox United Torah Judaism Party, is the most popular minister in the current Netanyahu government, according to recent public opinion polls.
In NYC, Litzman visited NYU Bellevue Hospital Center, with NYC Health and Hospitals, and Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn – where he grew up as a child. He also met with New York State Commissioner of Health, Dr. Howard Zucker. The city’s Health Commissioner Dr. Mary Travis Bassett, however, was not made available to meet with her counterpart Mr. Litzman, sources told Jewish Insider. Instead, he met with Dr. Jay Varma, the Deputy Commissioner for Disease Control, at the Department of Health.
In a previous email correspondence, a de Blasio spokesperson told Jewish Insider that the administration’s policy is to “meet with senior Israeli officials when they’re in town.”
City Hall did not immediately respond to a request for comment.