Trade unions: ‘The NHI is not moving fast enough’

Private sector’s role and slow roll out likely to top ANC policy conference delegates’ list of concerns It’s the billion-rand question: what role will the private sector play in the National Health Insurance (NHI)? Delegates at the ANC policy conference this week are likely to seek answers to this and what’s behind what they say is a slow move towards universal healthcare. This week, the health department released its NHI white paper. The document outlines how government will become the single buyer of health services for all South Africans from both public and private medical providers through a mandatory NHI scheme. The paper also heralds the introduction of high levels of government regulation, set to lower healthcare prices and slash — but not necessarily eliminate — medical aids. Ahead of the white paper’s release, trade union federation Cosatu’s social development policy co-ordinator Lebogang Mulaisi warned the organisation and its members would be watching to see if government kept its promise to end South Africa’s multipayer system of healthcare under the universal healthcare, or the NHI……more
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