Budget: R8bn for national health insurance

Government’s push for health reforms was reflected in an allocation

of R8 billion to the national health insurance (NHI) scheme.

Delivering this year’s Budget Speech, Finance Minister Pravin

Gordhan said:

» R1.2 billion of the

allocation will be used to introduce family healthcare teams;

» R2.9 billion to upgrade

healthcare facilities, medical equipment and hospital systems; and

» R1.4 billion to improve

district-based maternal and child health services.

Gordhan did not specify how much money was going to be allocated

towards the creation of a new office of standards compliance that will inspect

and certify hospitals.

The hospital compliance unit comes on the back of an outcry about

the general state of government hospitals.

HIV and Aids expenditure will amount to R26 billion over the

medium-term expenditure framework.

“This is based on the number of people on

treatment (which is expected to increase) from 1.2 million in the current

financial year to 2.6 million by 2013/14,” said Gordhan.

He said the introduction of the NHI will require substantial

reforms to address imbalances across both the public and private health sectors

and expand health professional training.

“The financial and organisational implications of these reforms are

being jointly addressed by the Department of Health and the Treasury,” said

Gordhan.


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