There is a very interesting developing story that I suspect I’m going to be spending a lot of time writing about - the National Health Insurance or NHI, for which I have previously expressed support.
The bill was finally presented to Parliament last week and as expected, it has caused much consternation, in the medical fraternity especially.
The truth is, the NHI means the beginning of the end for medical insurance and medical aid schemes, who have been ruling the roost for decades now when it comes to quality healthcare.
The NHI Bill has many supporters, who believe that it is the only way to ensure all South Africans get the same standard of healthcare across the board.
Naysayers are concerned that it will be centrally managed, with the Health Minister having the final say over how funds are allocated.
Given our politicians’ penchant for corruption, that is of course a serious concern.
I admit that R256 billion is a massive temptation for lang vingers.
But I think that can be mitigated by the people placed on the board of the NHI Fund; I’m thinking retired judges and doctors, a nurse, a common patient and a few professionals of course.
That sort of oversight could result in good balance.
But I don’t agree with those who believe we should repair what we have and continue the status quo.
Those people haven’t had to spend hours in a day hospital waiting to be seen by a frazzled nursing sister, an exhausted doctor and a pharmacist frustrated by the fact that you weren’t present when they called out your name, because you’ve had to quickly go pee and get a bite to eat; only to be told to come back tomorrow.