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.
Between South Africa’s Public Procurement Bill and the National Health Insurance Bill, health sector procurement in the country is set for a major shake-up – all as a landmark court decision recently reaffirmed the Constitutional imperative that public procurement must be conducted in a transparent way. Alicestine October takes a deep dive into the accelerating currents of procurement reform.
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.
South Africa’s new National Strategic Plan for HIV, TB, and STIs 2023-2028 and the country’s TB Recovery Plan necessitate a sharp increase in TB testing and increased enrolment into care, which will require additional spending on testing and medicines. Sihle Mahonga Ndawonde argues that a joint committee should be set up to review and interrogate provincial departments’ resource allocation decisions for the next three years.
2023 is set to be another tumultuous year for healthcare services, health policy, and governance in South Africa. We’ve picked 13 things to look out for this year arranged under three broad headings: leadership and governance, policy and legislation, and HIV, TB and the NSP.
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.
On being a member of Parliament, Philip van Staden from the Freedom Front Plus says he is living his childhood dream. Biénne Huisman spoke to him about his career in politics, his thoughts on national health insurance, his passion for the health portfolio, and his time as a member of the Gauteng Legislature after the Life Esidimeni tragedy.
In what is expected to become a verbal minefield littered with the usual ideological quips, the members of Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Health this week started the clause-by-clause deliberations on the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill. Alicestine October assesses the first leg of the deliberations and issues set to pop up in the next round of deliberations, starting with clause 5 of the Bill next week.
Framing the fundamental human right to healthcare as insurance cover opens it up for exploitation. It blocks any possibility of achieving equity in health care. Here Dr Louis Reynolds from the People’s Health Movement of South Africa explains why and how.
Michele Clarke recently took over the reins from Siviwe Gwarube as the Democratic Alliance’s health spokesperson and is no stranger to the hotbed of parliamentary politics. Bienne Huisman sat down with her to discuss taking up her new role amid ongoing deliberations on the NHI Bill in Parliament.
On Wednesday this week, it will be the 25th day of public hearings in Parliament on the National Health Insurance Bill (NHI) since the hearings started in May last year. In Part 2 of this two-part series on the NHI Bill, Alicestine October looks at how far the Bill has come in the legislative process and what to expect in the months ahead.
On Wednesday this week, it will be the 25th day of public hearings in Parliament on the National Health Insurance Bill since the hearings started in May last year. In Part 1 of this two-part series on the NHI Bill, Alicestine October looks at how MPs have dealt with oral submissions on the Bill in Parliament so far and assesses what this means for the Bill going forward.