2023 was a busy year for healthcare in South Africa. We saw several promising policy developments, landmark court cases, important pieces of legislation, and some changes in leadership. Yet, take a step back and at facility level little seems to have changed. Shortages of healthcare workers persist, corruption is still rife, budgets tight, and our health governance crisis remains as acute as ever. Marcus Low looks back at the year in health in fewer than 1 000 words.
Concerns around corruption and whether or not there would be health coverage for foreign nationals were two of the top talking points at a recent public hearing on the National Health Insurance Bill held in the Eastern Cape. Luvuyo Mehlwana reports.
It is often enlightening to ask how and why certain services differ in the ways they do between the private and public healthcare sectors. By too rigidly focusing on the NHI Bill, argues Spotlight Editor Marcus Low, government risks losing sight of the many other interesting answers to this and other important questions about healthcare reform in South Africa.
One of the most damaging aspects of our public discourse on National Health Insurance (NHI) is the mistaken notion in some quarters that the only two options are NHI and the status quo, argues Marcus Low.
In May, Dr Magome Masike stepped into the role of CEO and registrar of the Health Professions Council (HPCSA). Eight weeks into the job, Ufrieda Ho sat down to talk to him about his plans for the beleaguered institution.
South Africa’s health ombud Professor Malegapuru Makgoba’s tenure as ombud will end at the end of May. Bienne Huisman spoke to him about headline-making investigations into the Life Esidemeni tragedy and conditions at Rahima Moosa Mother and Child Hospital, his childhood in Limpopo, and how he side-stepped former President Nelson Mandela’s invitation to join the African National Congress.
The Health Department’s recent response to submissions and its own recommendations on amendments to the National Health Insurance Bill sadly does not realise the gravity of the threat to the future of medicine selection and access. As the Bill currently stands, it will leave us at the mercy of advisory committees that bear no duty to be transparent in deciding which medicines people will be able to access under NHI, the authors argue.
An HIV prevention injection approved in South Africa, several promising developments on the tuberculosis front, the National Health Insurance Bill grinding its way through Parliament, no end in sight to healthcare worker shortages, another dire year for health in Gauteng – Spotlight wraps up 2022 in under 1 000 words.
Some healthcare services at Boitumelo Regional Hospital in Kroonstad are hamstrung by construction delays, poor maintenance, and water shortages – despite the hospital being classified as one of the Free State’s ‘ideal hospitals’. Refilwe Mochoari investigates.
National Health Insurance (NHI) was one of the hot topics at the 2022 Public Health Association of South Africa Conference recently held in Durban. While several speakers and attendees expressed support for the principles underpinning NHI, many also expressed reservations. Elri Voigt assesses what the conference told us about the views of some of South Africa’s public health experts on NHI.