Medical aid fees to guide NHI payments

2011-08-24 10:11

Cape Town - The yardstick for how much people will pay for national health insurance (NHI) is their current contribution to medical funds.

Dr Yogan Pillay, deputy director general for health, told the parliamentary standing committee on budgets that the plan for the NHI system was to try to ensure that individuals do not exceed their currrent medical aid costs.

Pillay said that revenue sources for the NHI need to be as broad-based as possible, so that smaller contributions are required.

He said that the cost of the NHI, at R255bn in real terms (what it would cost today), was merely an estimate.

Two weeks ago the department of health issued the first NHI policy document.
It said that greater clarity as to the final cost would be obtained closer to the NHI's implementation.

For the next five years pilot projects would be introduced at district level, which would give a better estimation of costs. The overall cost structure would then be refined.

Dr Mark Blecher, social services director at the National Treasury, said the NHI would not be introduced overnight.

The Green Paper makes provision for a 15-year transitional period, during which the national healthcare system will be gradually strengthened.

Certain objectives will be achieved in three phases. The first five years involve the five pilot projects, as well as the bolstering of the public sector. The second phase includes pilot projects on contracting with the private sector.

Blecher said the NHI will be funded by way of the finance minister’s preserve. For the next six months feedback on the options for a financing mechanism is to be given to the portfolio committee on finance.

A discussion document on the matter will shortly be issued by Treasury, after which comprehensive consultation will take place.

He said that the minister of finance alone has the power to introduce compulsory taxation and levies, and the final decision will be within ministerial jurisdiction.
Blecher said it was too soon to say when contributions to the NHI will start. These details will be dealt with in the discussion document on finance.

Director general Precious Matsoso added that before the funding mechanism is examined, the pilot projects will be implemented to determine costs.
She said that healthcare delivery needs to be transformed and the healthcare system upgraded before the funding mechanism can be introduced.

What is needed is a radical change of administration and management and a putting together of a comprehensive package of care on the basis of restructured primary healthcare.

  • Tolerant - 2011-08-24 10:36

    This is not a good plan. Some people pay nothing towards a medical aid, they won't then pay nothing towards NHI? Rather use a percentage of your income or increase Vat.

  • Tigra - 2011-08-24 10:37

    The government must fix what is broken FIRST. People will always resent more tax when they KNOW that it's not going to be spent properly and instead line the pockets of some cadre and/or tenderpreneur. Why should I pay the same for the NHI as a medical aid when the service I can get from the public healthcare is 10% of what I receive from private healthcare... Lastly, what happens to the disabled/handicapped who can only work BECAUSE they have private healthcare? If I had to rely on public healthcare, the limited medication range they provide is not good enough to keep my condition in check - i.e. I'll go from paying almost R3000 in tax every month, to drawing a disability pension!

  • SAF - 2011-08-24 10:39

    And I suppose that those that have private medical aid will be forced to contribute. I thought that freedom of association was our constitutional right but it seems that part of the constitution is not relevant in the democracy of SA. Just now we will also be forced to be members of the ANC.

      Ross - 2011-08-24 13:17

      "democracy of SA"... haloooo, haloooo.

  • stofsuier - 2011-08-24 10:47

    I will not pay as I have my own medical aid, we are in a democratic country not a communist country. Democracy means freedom of choice.

  • Currie_Mafia - 2011-08-24 10:48

    Medical Aids in collusion with doctors & private healthcare are screwing us, so I hope that the NHI will be beneficial to everyone & provide total medical cover.

      Ross - 2011-08-24 13:15

      Don't forget to take your own bedding and cutlery along when you book into your NHI hospital. Also get the family to bring food on a daily basis. Doom to spray the "Goggas" will also be helpfull.

      Kenpachi - 2011-08-24 13:22

      Dream on,..this goverment know only how to steal.

  • AJ - 2011-08-24 10:51

    So I must pay R5500.00 per month for a fraction of the services, and sit in a queue for days, not knowing if they will treat whatever condition I may have, and then if I want to have better I must pay on top of that. what happened to freedom of choice, or a democracy. I should have the right to choose. They (Govt) mismanage our tax spend on infrastructure through gross fraudulent activities, tax me to death, and now I must pay for the poor, unemployed, and previously disadvantaged. hey really are finding good reasons for one to leave,

  • K_za - 2011-08-24 10:52

    Why don't you spend the money on birth control rather!!!

  • terry - 2011-08-24 10:54

    I have a very bad feeling about this .......

  • Debra - 2011-08-24 10:55

    When getting health insurance I usually go through "Penny Health" website. The reason for this approach is because I get more personalized service and assistance. Once I went though ehealthinsurance and it offered no customer support.

  • Enigma07 - 2011-08-24 11:04

    The minority taxpayers (6 million) will be supporting the majority of the population (50 million)not going to work. And most of us spend about R1500 on medical so then we are going to be taxed this as well. This is not constitutional.

  • Grump - 2011-08-24 11:06

    Quote:- "He said that the minister of finance alone has the power to introduce compulsory taxation and levies, and the final decision will be within ministerial jurisdiction." And how much more does this government intend to squeeze from those that currently cannot afford to feed their families owing to the current excessive level of taxation ..... ?????

  • george60 - 2011-08-24 11:08

    For seveteen years the ANC screwed up the medical aid in this country , and now to stay in power they overplay their hands at the cost of the overburdened middle class tax payer again. Well all the fat cats in the goverment back to the basics, if you want a car buy your own from your market related salary. By the way their current car allowances are they taxable?

  • Dragon - 2011-08-24 11:11

    Don't quite know if I understand this correctly. So I can run and change my cover to the lowest possible premium and that is what I will pay? Should be a sliding scale and some people who appear to have a good income on paper, also have more commitments than others and don't even have the money to belong to a medical aid. Some have more than one income coming in and only one party paying medical aid - seems that it should be income based to be totally fair.

  • NeelsK - 2011-08-24 11:15

    "A discussion document on the matter will shortly be issued by Treasury, after which comprehensive consultation will take place." Ohh, just like to Toll Saga consultations. Yes, yes. That would work.

  • schmerz - 2011-08-24 11:21

    Yes, let's all put our money together so we can support the scourge?

  • Skeptic - 2011-08-24 11:32

    No. I will not contribute this much to a system I cannot trust. Forget it.

      Ross - 2011-08-24 13:11

      It will be compulsory something like VAT. Welcome to socialism.

      DoublySalmon - 2011-08-24 21:23

      Should not have voted for democracy, we're now all white slaves working only to support the "bribes" the ANC pays the masses for votes. I'm glad my parents didn't vote for the end of Apartheid, they did not give their own country up willingly.

  • DoublySalmon - 2011-08-24 11:38

    So you'd be required to pay double what you're currently paying your medical aid. One payment towards the private company and another to the government which will just be as good as money burned.

  • Paul - 2011-08-24 11:41

    Let me understand this correctly. He is saying that if I spend R5000 a month on medical aid at the moment, they expect me to pay an ADDITIONAL R5000 a month towards the NHI?? And where must that come from, pray tell?

      motsokwane - 2011-08-24 12:55

      No paul you will pay less than what you are paying for your current medical aid. The NHI contribution will be in a form of PAYE.As to the private medical aid, it will be your choice to continue paying for it.You can pay for both if you are well-off because NHI will be compulsory to everyone earning a salary.

      p123 - 2011-08-24 13:06

      ANC want to suck every cent out of honest taxpayers. Maybe if they collected the billions in Income Tax that Taxi Owners don't pay they could balance the books.

      Ross - 2011-08-24 13:09

      They said it will be less so that means you will pay R4999. Your monthly medical aid contributions will thus be R 9999. As a pensioner who pays R2700 for a hospital plan for my wife and myself we will be buggered as R 5399 will be unaffordable. Philemon the Fidel Castro fan living down the road is happy either way.

      Erika Aust - 2011-08-24 14:55

      Exactly my point!! My current med.aid is R3 000, so add another R3 000 and now i'm paying exactly the amount of my bond!!!! This is ludicrous??? Even worse, i may not resign from my company med.aid? It's compulsory, how will i survive? I only get the bare minimum rate of inflation increase every year (if i'm lucky)

  • NuttyZA - 2011-08-24 11:52

    Well that is good then, because I currently don't pay anything for Medical Aid

  • umhlopo - 2011-08-24 11:54

    nhi is all good and well but i for one will not pay for something if i dont get value for my money,i hope the govt suceeds with nhi but if the rest of their departments are anything to go by then i have little hope.

  • SolomonMagalefa - 2011-08-24 12:12

    I am happy to contribute. It's high time we nationalise all medical services in the country. Then it's the same treatment for all. I'm happy to stand in waiting rooms if that's what it takes.

      Sickly - 2011-08-24 13:23

      I'll quote you on this when your children are in server pain and you're told they have to wait 4 hours. I suspect you'll change your tune quickly.

      munchies - 2011-08-24 13:51

      Seriously? Are you nuts?

      DeonL - 2011-08-24 15:16

      NHI is not the same as nationalise all services. You listen too much to the "children's league".

  • Dan18 - 2011-08-24 12:13

    Who can afford such ludicrous amounts? I don't even pay my full medical now - my employer pays towards it. I can't afford my own medical without my employer's contribution - nevermind someone else's!

  • Winifred - 2011-08-24 12:30

    I am a pensioner, I spend R5000 a month on medical aid which is more than I can afford. After a visit to our local goverment hospital in our area to visit a friend made me realise that before I put a plate of food on the table I would first pay our medical aid subscription. This government hospital is filthy and the patients are badly neglected. From the moment you enter the gates all you see is filth filth and more filth and this is what they call a hospital. Sies. God forbid that I ever land up there I would rather starve and Medical Aids are strangling us as well but nothing is done for pensioners as usual. They believe when we retire we have a money tree growing in our back yard.

  • pages:
  • 1