PRETORIA - Finance Minister Tito Mbweni said on Wednesday that government would be reprioritising R546 million within the National Health Insurance (NHI) indirect grant to address the critical shortage of medical professionals and to procure beds and linen for public healthcare facilities.
The NHI is government's primary healthcare policy aimed at changing the purchase and delivery of health services by addressing inequalities between the private and public sectors, which serve a population of about 16 percent and more than 85 percent, respectively.
The NHI Bill has been tabled for public comment and will be resubmitted to Cabinet shortly. When enacted, it will establish the NHI Fund.
Mboweni said the department of health and the national treasury were working on a new payment mechanism, based on the number of patients served, for contracted general practitioners, in preparation for the NHI.
In his medium-term budget policy statement (MTBPS), Mboweni said that part of the NHI indirect grant will be reprioritised over the 2019 medium-term expenditure framework period to address challenges in one of government's four largest allocations in the medium-term.