Loading...
See More

Medical schemes sceptical about NHI

Jul 03 2012 15:01 I-Net Bridge

Related Articles

NHI seen as catch-all solution

SACP warns against NHI 'tender hijackers'

NHI pilot districts named

NHI first phase to start in 2013

Revamp to set groundwork for NHI

BHF concerned by tax credit changes

 

Johannesburg - Medical schemes in SA doubt the success of government’s ambitious national health insurance (NHI) and believe the provision of healthcare in the country is deteriorating‚ a recent survey reveals.

The survey by professional services firm PwC, titled Strategic and Emerging Issues in the Medical Scheme Industry‚ shows the schemes believe the NHI alone is not the solution to SA’s healthcare problems.

Respondents to the survey believed working conditions first needed to be improved and a total overhaul of basic resources should be implemented before NHI.

The survey focused on strategic and emerging issues in the South African medical scheme industry.

The survey was aimed at raising awareness of medical schemes' views on emerging trends and issues in the industry‚ understanding the strategic thinking of principal officers in the sector‚ and providing insight into how the industry may evolve over the next three years.

Principal of the survey‚ PwC’s medical schemes leader for southern Africa Ilse French‚ said: “The medical scheme industry in SA faces unique challenges and it is important that it evaluates and adapt to the needs of the emerging market.”

The survey said only a quarter of the participants agreed that the introduction of the NHI system would change the current state of healthcare if it was implemented in accordance with the focus contained in the NHI Green Paper.

According to the survey‚ more than half of medical schemes were of the opinion that the recently announced  investigation by SA’s Competition Commission into healthcare costs could be useful‚ and 38% believed such an investigation was long overdue.

The majority of participants (95%) were of the view that prescribed minimum benefits (PMBs) paid in full resulted in excessive benefits being paid by medical schemes to the detriment of members.

Participants believed that because there was no control over what tariff a provider could charge‚ members’ benefits may be at risk due to possible unwarranted‚ uncontrolled expenditure.

Commenting on the survey‚ Tom Winterboer‚ financial services leader for southern Africa and Africa at PwC‚ said: “This is just one of several findings surrounding the medical aid industry contained in PwC’s first edition of the Strategic and Emerging Issues in the Medical Scheme Industry survey‚ which was carried out among principal officers of 20 schemes registered in SA and one from Namibia‚ covering 53% of the South African industry based on 2010 average principal members.”

The survey also shows the importance of information and communications technology in health management‚ saying: “Schemes cited managing data and data quality as the major technology weaknesses within the industry.

"Almost half of the schemes have considered the role of e-health in reducing costs and improving accessibility.”

 
nhi  |  healthcare  |  medical schemes
NEXT ON FIN24X

 
 
 

Read Fin24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
32 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Company Snapshot

sponsored content
Sanral arrogant and evasive - JPSA 2014-09-04 09:13

Lawyers representing Justice Project SA have labelled responses they received from Sanral's legal team relating to e-tolls as surprisingly arrogant and evasive.

We're talking about:

Small Business

Retailers of any shape and size can now unlock the power of mobile transacting.
 

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...
Loading...