Cabinet firmly committed to NHI implementation - Minister Ntshavheni

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Cabinet is forging ahead with “its firm commitment for the implementation of the National Health Insurance (NHI)”.

This according to Minister in the Presidency, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, who held a post-Cabinet media briefing on Thursday.

Ntshavheni explained that the NHI represents a way to ensure that all South Africans have access to quality healthcare.

“The commitment to NHI is premised on the fact that both public and private health sectors are not sustainable. The current parallel and fragmented systems must be integrated into a national system so that all resources are accessible to all people.

“The implementation of the NHI is premised on the implementation of a comprehensive approach to accelerating infrastructure improvement in the public sector. This is not something that should be contemplated separately from the reforms in the NHI Bill,” she said.

Ntshavheni explained that through the NHI, the pressure on “congested public facilities” will be lifted.

“Focusing narrowly on the intended reforms of private financing of healthcare has detracted from the Bill’s intended reforms of public and private provision of services. It is in reforming the service platform that space will be created for decongesting public facilities.

“When the NHI Fund is able to purchase services from both public and private providers, we will begin to see the pressure lifted from highly pressured public facilities,” she said.

The Minister emphasised that during every phase of implementation of the NHI, progress is monitored.

“The intentional distortion that the passage of the Bill will reform everything overnight is mischievous at best. The transitional provisions are clear that the implementation will take time and that the reforms will be implemented in phases.

“At each and every phase there will be evaluation of the impact and the necessary gaps and corrective measures will be taken,” she said. –