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Mar 10, 2024

In light of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s recent State of the Nation Address (SONA 2024), Bestmed would like to provide members with an update, regarding its position on the adoption of the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill.


NHI is the means through which government proposes to finance the coverage of Universal Health Care (UHC), which will give South Africans access to a range of free healthcare services in public or private healthcare facilities. Government plans to implement NHI incrementally to deal with “health system financing, the health workforce, medical products, vaccines and technologies, and health information systems,” states President Ramaphosa.


Bestmed continues to recognise and support the importance of adopting UHC principles and believes that all medical schemes play a critical role in driving this, correctly, going forward. We will continue to play a key role in expanding health services across the country, not only through the Scheme, but also through our community outreach initiatives and extended partnerships.


The Scheme is still of the view that South Africa’s healthcare system will not change in the foreseeable future given the extensive process required to enact the Bill into law. The unclear detail regarding the funding, operational model, and the role of the private healthcare sector also leaves many uncertainties and concerns around the viability of the proposed NHI and its incremental implementation.


We, however, fully believe that the public and private healthcare sectors can work together for the collective wellbeing of all. We are committed to continuous engagement with government to seek a resolution that allows the Scheme to continue to fulfil a meaningful role in the healthcare sector, while ensuring that access to quality healthcare is not compromised into the future. Focus is currently very much on government and National Treasury for further clarity, indications of funding mechanisms and a clear road map.

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