No amount of spin will make NHI a success
21 June 2018
The DA notes that the Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, has today gazetted the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill.
Sadly, it does not matter how the Minister tries to spin the NHI plan, the fact remains that it simply is not feasible.
We have already seen how NHI pilot projects across the country failed dismally.
Doctors and pharmacy assistants contracted to assist with NHI projects have allegedly not received salaries from the Department of Health’s payroll administrator. In Limpopo, a group of 30 doctors, are now reportedly unemployed after their NHI contracts were not renewed.
The ANC has laid waste to the South African health care system, and the NHI is just a shoddy attempt to cover up their failures.
The DA is the only party that has a sound and tested health plan which can bring about true change in South Africa’s collapsing health care system.
The DA’s Our Health Plan is more affordable, can be rolled out sooner and it is fairer. Our Health Plan is based on 4 aspects:
- Faster delivery - Our Health Plan will provide quality healthcare to all within 5-8 years, whereas NHI will take 10-15 years to implement.
- More affordable - Our Health Plan will provide quality healthcare to all at a cost that we as a country can easily afford. It can be implemented using our current health budget, but with an additional R6 billion achieved by bringing the current medical aid tax credit of R17 billion on budget. This would mean that medical aid contributions would no longer be tax deductible. However, the remaining R11 billion of additional revenue would go to reducing the costs of medical aid. The NHI, on the other hand, is budgeted to cost up to an additional R182 billion per year, which we simply cannot afford.
- Fairer - By bringing the medical aid tax credit on budget, and allocating some of it to build better services in the public health sector, those with medical aid are cross-subsidising those without, an act of health justice.
- Works in practice - Many of the aspects of Our Health Plan have already been successfully implemented in the Western Cape, and the results speak for themselves. The DA-run Western Cape Province has a track record of delivering better health care than any other province. For example, the maternal mortality rate in South Africa is 153 deaths per 100 000 live births, while the rate for the Western Cape is almost half that, at 84.
The DA will continue to expose the NHI for what it truly is – unaffordable, impractical and unfair.
Issued by Lungiswa James, DA Member of the Portfolio Committee on Health, 21 June 2018