NHI pilots for 10 districts – Treasury

2011-10-25 14:20

National health insurance (NHI) pilot projects will take place in 10 districts to test feasibility and “scalability”, the Treasury said in its medium-term budget policy statement, tabled in the National Assembly today.

The pilot projects will include district-based clinical specialist support teams, school-based primary health care services and family health teams and general practitioner services.

“Steps will be taken over the medium-term expenditure framework (MTEF) period ahead to improve public health administration, accelerate the hospital revitalisation programme and pilot district-based primary health services as part of the preparation for national health insurance,” the document says.

“The government needs to become more efficient in the way it spends money, it needs better control of spending and clear focus on mandates can yield recurrent savings.”

Spending on health is projected to rise from R121 billion next year, to R140 billion in 2014.

Treasury says the quality of health services needs to be “significantly improved”.

Challenges include inadequate infrastructure, weak hospital management and a shortage of skilled health workers.

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