Photo: Envato Elements

DA on NHI bill: Pilot projects were a complete disaster

The Democratic Alliance claims that the NHI bill pilot projects were a complete disaster despite over R4 billion being spent.


Photo: Envato Elements

The Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize stated that the successful implementation of the National Health Insurance will depend on collaborations and effective political efforts. The DA claims pilot projects were a complete disaster as vacant posts were frozen due to lack of funding.

Mkhize addressed the media on Friday, regarding the Public Health Strengthening Report on the NHI.

“It is a collaborative effort by government, private providers, academia, civil society, business, and health professionals to create a plan that abides by the same objectives, timelines, indicators and financial resources to re-address challenges in the health sector.”

Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize
NHI Bill
Dr Zweli Mkhize

The DA bites the bullet

The Democratic Alliance claims that these pilot projects had a low success rate, despite the R4 billion spent on implementation in different districts.

“The report now details the haphazard nature in which various interventions were rolled out, lack of controls and accountability, poor planning and lack of funding in certain instances.

projects were rarely implemented or completed due to the lack of planning and funds not being released on time, there was infrastructure deterioration because of a lack of basic maintenance; and only 350 part-time doctors were hired across all 11 projects.”

DA National Spokesperson on Health, Siviwe Gwarube

A call for action

The party has sent a letter to the Chairperson of the Health Committee, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, summoning that Mkhize appears before the portfolio committee and in further detail to give feedback on the report.

“Parliament cannot simply be reduced to a rubber-stamping station. We cannot deliberate on legislation that has been based on pilot projects which point to a collapse of a health system.

What is clear is that if the NHI Bill is rushed through without requisite scrutiny then those failed pilot projects will become the reality of the South African health system across the board.”

DA National Spokesperson on Health, Siviwe Gwarube

The standing aim for the NHI is equal health care for all

Despite the partial success of the NHI Bill, it seeks to form a single state-owned and led medical healthcare fund that consists of the entire population, effectively removing the need for private medical funds.

“There are those who are concerned because of the impact it has on the way they are running their businesses. That’s not a big issue because we are building a system that will make everybody adjust”

Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize

The government is proposed to pay for all the healthcare needs of the population in exchange for yet another form of taxation.