NEWS & ANALYSIS

NHI already having a negative impact on the economy - FF Plus

Discovery Group's shares fell 8,5% to R115,47 right after Minister's announcement of Bill being tabled

National Health Insurance (NHI) already having a negative impact on the economy

13 August 2019

The FF Plus's foreboding that the National Health Insurance (NHI) will have an extremely negative impact on South Africa's economy already seems to be coming true.

One clear indication of this is that when the NHI Bill was tabled in Parliament last week Thursday, the Discovery Group's shares fell with 8,5% to R115,47 right after the Minister's announcement. Yesterday, the group's shares fell with another 8,4% and closed at R105,72, the lowest since 2014.

Thus, the NHI Bill is already having a detrimental effect on South Africa's economy and the FF Plus is worried that the economy will suffer great damage due to this new notion of nationalising the country's health care services.

With the unemployment rate currently at 29%, the concern is that the NHI will seriously restrict the functioning and survival of the 80 registered medical aid companies in the country and that will cause the unemployment rate to rise even higher seeing as these medical aid companies will have to retrench personnel.

On top of that, many specialised medical professionals will opt to leave the country and that will have a further negative impact on our economy.

The government's attempt to nationalise health care services and to take full control of the administration and management thereof will mean that South Africa's NHI will simply follow in the footsteps of Eskom, Transnet, Denel, the SABC and many more. The NHI will merely make it easier to steal taxpayers' money.

There is a system similar to the NHI, namely the NHS, which was implemented in Britain and it is not even functioning properly there. Yesterday, a British newspaper, the Daily Mail, reported that the system is collapsing due to a staff crisis and patients have been waiting for three weeks just to get an appointment with the doctor. Some of the doctors have a waiting list of five weeks.

The FF Plus is seriously concerned about this as the South African government wants to implement a system that is obviously not well thought out. If the system is causing problems in Britain, one cannot help but wonder what will happen in South Africa where poor administration, mismanagement and corruption are at the order of the day.

Issued by Philip van Staden, FF Plus MP and Chief spokesperson: Health, 13 August 2019