No clear fi­nan­cial plan on NHI scheme

CityPress - - Business - LE­SETJA MA­LOPE le­­lope@city­

The lack of a clear and com­pre­hen­sive fi­nan­cial plan in the white pa­per on the Na­tional Health In­sur­ance (NHI) scheme and how it would be funded is one of the fac­tors halt­ing de­ci­sion mak­ing in the pri­vate sec­tor.

Ac­cord­ing to Neil Kirby, the head of health­care and life sciences at Werks­mans At­tor­neys, the white pa­per on the NHI was short on fi­nan­cial de­tails, which led to the in­sti­tu­tion be­ing un­able to plan prop­erly and rea­son­ably.

Last month, Health Min­is­ter Aaron Mot­soaledi said the im­ple­men­ta­tion of the NHI could cost R69 bil­lion over four years.

Speak­ing to City Press shortly af­ter giv­ing a talk on the white pa­per at the law firm’s of­fices in Sand­ton this week, Kirby said: “The dif­fi­culty is that we don’t know what the fi­nan­cial im­pli­ca­tions will be be­cause the ac­tual fi­nanc­ing of the NHI is not clear from what is set out in the white pa­per, so we would have to wait for some de­gree of con­fir­ma­tion on the way in which NHI will be fi­nanced, and on what the im­pli­ca­tions will be from a wider fi­nan­cial per­spec­tive.”

Kirby also said that the sooner the gaps were filled in, in­clud­ing on how much each mem­ber would pay, the bet­ter.

How­ever, he said the de­part­ment had put plans in place via ad­vi­sory com­mit­tees for the gaps to be filled in re­gard­ing the fi­nanc­ing.

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