'I signed NHI to end apartheid in healthcare' - Ramaphosa

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ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa says he signed the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill to “end apartheid in healthcare”. Under the new law private and public health services will be integrated in phases.
“We are taking forward the work started by Nelson Mandela. Only the ANC can do that, no other party can remove the vestiges of apartheid,” Ramaphosa told supporters at an election meeting at the Bokamoso Sports Ground in North West.
To ease the burden on public health services the government is roping in the private sector.
In his newsletter this week, Ramaphosa said: “The NHI aims to use the respective strengths and capabilities of the private and public health sectors to build a single, quality health system for all.”
Government healthcare services cater for 84% of the population, which results in inferior services such as patients waiting more than three hours on average before they see a nurse or a doctor.
The NHI is expected to be funded through taxes and special contributions.
The legislation has drawn much criticism.
The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse said the president ignored the public input on the bill before he signed it.
The DA said the NHI will not bring equality in the healthcare system. In its current form, it lacks the necessary investment to provide accessible and quality healthcare as mandated by the constitution. The DA also warned of possible serious corruption and mismanagement. The burden of funding would be disproportionately placed on taxpayers.
The EFF rejected the bill, saying the health system does not need “an NSFAS-style funding system to resolve the crisis of debilitating healthcare”. It also warned of corruption by politicians and the private sector.
Build One South Africa’s Mmusi Maimane said on the Sunday Times Politics Weekly podcast the NHI is a populist move timed for the May 29 election.
21 May 11AM English South Africa News · Daily News

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