Israel’s Aliyah and Integration Ministry announced on Monday that it will provide a grant package for immigrants working in the health-care and engineering sectors, and who reside in the country’s periphery.

The grants will be given to physicians, health-care workers and engineers who emigrated to Israel and live outside of the center of the country, according to a statement.

The grant package is designed to incentivize moves by such professionals to peripheral areas, according to the statement. Physicians will be eligible to receive 50,000 shekels ($14,300) per family, while the other professions will be given 20,000 shekels ($5,720). Both grant packages will be given in two payments, during the second and 13th month of residence in the north or in the southern Negev.

To receive the package, one head of the household must have immigrated in the past 24 months, be living and working in Israel’s periphery and have a license to work in the following professions: medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, pharmaceutical assistant, optometry, orthotics, clinical genetics, medical lab worker, speech pathology, dietician, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, dental technician, dental hygienist, nursing, clinical criminology, podiatry and surgical podiatry.

The incentive comes in the wake of a looming health-care staffing shortage that is expected to impact the entire country and the periphery in particular.

“I am implementing an important strategic plan which the Israeli government approved, that will look out for the health needs of the residents of the Negev and the Galilee,” said Oded Forer, minister of development of the periphery, Negev and Galilee.

“For many years, there has been a major shortage of doctors in Israel’s peripheral regions, therefore I made it a top priority to change the situation when I took office,” he said.

JNS

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