SA to import doctors for NHI - report

2010-09-26 18:39

Johannesburg - The government was planning to import thousands of doctors to implement its National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme, the Sunday Times reported.

“There are many doctors in South Africa who are working hard... but they are mainly in urban areas, and the need is mainly in rural areas,” NHI chief planner Olive Shisana was quoted as saying.

"At least in the beginning, we will have to bring in more doctors from outside the country. We’ve done the gap analysis - it will be thousands, not tens of thousands, but certainly thousands,” she said.

The African National Congress announced last week that the implementation of the NHI - mainly funded by taxpayers-- would be staggered over three stages, starting in 2012 with a five-year phase focused on rural areas.