No hospitals and only 40 out of 372 provincial clinics in Gauteng have so far been assessed for the proposed National Health Insurance (NHI).
This information is from Gauteng Health MEC Bandile Masuku in reply to my questions in the Gauteng Legislature.
According to Masuku, the 40 Primary Health Clinics were assessed by the Office of Health Standards Compliance (OHSC) in the week of 26 -30 August 2019, but “no facility has received the results from OHSC whether they have been accredited or not.”
It is not known when all Gauteng state health facilities will be accredited as “the accreditation mandate lies with OHSC and therefore they are the ones who provide dates of accreditation of the hospitals.”
This is yet another indication that Government is woefully unprepared to introduce its ambitious NHI in the near future.
I doubt whether the OHSC has the resources to assess every single public health facility, and most of them are unlikely to get accreditation because of poor facilities and service.
This follows the disclosure that not a single Gauteng health facility has been assessed as complying with the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
The big question is this: If government cannot even meet quality requirements for its own health facilities, how are they going to efficiently run a massive centralized NHI fund that will contract with all health providers?
It would be far better to do achievable incremental improvements in both the public and private health sectors rather than a risky half-baked NHI plan that could make things worse.