The civil rights organisation AfriForum today expressed concern regarding the huge number of medical legal claims against provincial health departments.
Rapport yesterday reported that Kimi Makwetu, the Auditor General, concluded that these claims are much more in seven of the country’s provinces than the various departments’ industry budget for 2018/2019 and subsequently contain large risks for service delivery.
Dr Eugene Brink, AfriForum Spokesperson for health related matters, says these facts are extremely concerning. “These claims weren’t taken into consideration when the budget was compiled and successful claims will thus have to be paid from money that was intended for services. However, it is not only simply the number of negligence claims that is a matter of concern, but also huge amounts of irregular expenditure.
AfriForum recently particularly submitted criminal charges in all the provinces regarding this type of expenditure that amounted t Continue reading…
Since 1994 South Africa has invested substantial resources in healthcare services. As a result, it’s has made significant health gains. For example, nearly 4-million people get HIV treatment and mother-to-child transmission has nearly been eliminated.
Service delivery has also been significantly expanded to more than 4000 health facilities. And there’s been a large increase in the number of healthcare professionals.
But health care needs aren’t static. For example, non-communicable diseases like diabetes and hypertension are now responsible for more deaths than HIV and TB combined. And in some instances successes have created challenges. For example, the expansion of HIV treatment has meant that there’s now a large cohort of chronic patients requiring ongoing care. In addition, the reality of a largely youthful population requires interventions so that health gains aren’t lost.
Plans by the Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, to push ahead with the National Health Insurance (NHI), is an act of desperation. It is a decision doomed to failure from the outset.
The minister is completely out of touch with the crisis in the South African public health system, and this was highlighted by his denial of a crisis despite the damning report from the commissioner of the Office of Health Standards Compliance (OHSC).
Recent presentations to the Portfolio Committee on Health by each of the provinces, the OHSC and the Auditor-General, painted a picture of a health system that has collapsed entirely. It is beyond a crisis, it has simply failed.
DA visits to hospitals and clinics around the country have exposed medicine shortages, equipment shortages and a severe shortage of beds. In most hospitals visited, infrastructure is collapsing and lack of maintenance in facilities is painfully obvious.