National Health Insurance (NHI) can be divisive, not just because of what it proposes to do but because of how it is often sold as an all-or-nothing issue – either you buy into NHI completely, or you want things to stay essentially the same.
As the National Portfolio Committee on Health embarks on its public hearing process on the NHI, due to start tomorrow (25 October) in Mpumalanga, Parliament has confirmed that more than 100 000 written submissions on the Bill have already been received. This is more than a month before the extended deadline for submissions expires on the 29th of November.
These are the words of Dr Nicholas Crisp, the man who has been appointed to one of the most challenging positions in the country’s healthcare system – that of developing and implementing the organisational capacity for the administration and operations of National Health Insurance (NHI)
The government recently published an updated National Health Insurance Bill for public scrutiny and commentary, inciting support and opposition, informed by three primary considerations: economic interests, ideological prisms and lived experiences within the nation’s health system. This article combines all these dimensions and demonstrates how NHI benefits transcend the current narrow focus on fiscal or revenue issues.