No clear financial plan on NHI scheme

Johannesburg - The lack of a clear and comprehensive financial plan in the white paper on the National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme and how it would be funded is one of the factors halting decision making in the private sector.

According to Neil Kirby, the head of healthcare and life sciences at Werksmans Attorneys, the white paper on the NHI was short on financial details, which led to the institution being unable to plan properly and reasonably.

Last month, Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said the implementation of the NHI could cost R69 billion over four years.

Speaking to City Press shortly after giving a talk on the white paper at the law firm’s offices in Sandton this week, Kirby said: “The difficulty is that we don’t know what the financial implications will be because the actual financing of the NHI is not clear from what is set out in the white paper, so we would have to wait for some degree of confirmation on the way in which NHI will be financed, and on what the implications will be from a wider financial perspective.”

Kirby also said that the sooner the gaps were filled in, including on how much each member would pay, the better.

However, he said the department had put plans in place via advisory committees for the gaps to be filled in regarding the financing.

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