How will NHI impact you?

Parliament introduced the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill a few weeks ago. What does that mean for taxpayers and what does that mean for members of Medical Schemes?

The NHI bill seeks to offer top quality healthcare to all members of society. NHI will be government funded which means tax-payer funded and it is estimated that R259bn will be needed for implementation in order to provide comprehensive healthcare to all South Africans.


Some concerns were raised by various institutions in terms of where the funding will come from, the actual cost of implementation, and the constant issue of corruption within the government and SOE’s. And by looking at the track record of the major SOE’s, one might feel not feel to positive. It was indicated that major implementation would only be about 10 years away and hopefully a few of the early concerns will be put to bed by then and we still have healthcare professionals left.

Where will Medical Schemes be in all of this? The bill proposes that the mandatory NHI will provide the comprehensive healthcare that Medical Schemes do currently- some experts say the Medical Schemes will only be able to provide supplementary coverage over and above what NHI covers, others like Discovery Health says that they believe Medical Schemes will probably still be allowed to run alongside the NHI.

The fact remains that a lot remains unclear and should become less so in the next year or two.

Ruvan J Grobler

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