NHI scheme meeting held at St Martins

2016-03-10 06:00


TALKS of a universal health insurance (NHI) scheme for all South Africans have been going on countrywide, as government tries to fill the gap between private and public health systems.

On Tuesday Ugu District health officials and NHI representatives gathered at St Martins sewing room to explain to a poorly attended meeting on how the proposed and Gazetted health insurance works. The Department of Health will be doing road shows enlightening the public further.

Ugu health spokesperson Thabsile Ngcobo said the aim of the insurance scheme is to improve service in clinics and hospitals.

“The NHI is designed to pool funds to provide access to quality, affordable personal health services for all, based on health needs.”

Speaking on behalf of NHI Dr Jimmy Mthethwa said most countries have universal health coverage.

Mthethwa said the NHI will be funded by a pool of funds that come from taxation of all working class people to assist the unemployed, however, Mthethwa said the country still has to implement a way in which it will be monitored. He said when it comes to doctors, private doctors will be sucked into the NHI.

“The question of what this means for private and public doctors is that the system will adopt all doctors and there will be no private sector. All citizens will have a card that will take care of all their primary health needs,” said Mthethwa.

Private medical health providers will still exist, however, they will only cater for personal cosmetic use.

Mthethwa said government is still open to views from stakeholders on the NHI before its is officially passed.

Department of Health and ANC regional leadership were not pleased by the planning of the session and suggested that a new date be set for another session where more people will be invited to the meeting.

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