DENOSA says nurses will carry out their duties better under NHI

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Nurses’ union DENOSA says the signing of the NHI Bill into law will improve job satisfaction as nurses will be able to provide comprehensive healthcare services to patients without having to worry about the unavailability of medication, equipment and resources.

President Cyril Ramaphosa signed the Bill into law in Pretoria, paving the way for the implementation of universal health coverage where everyone will have access to quality healthcare.

DENOSA spokesperson Sibongiseni Delihlazo says this marks a remarkable move away from the undesirable legacy of two unequal healthcare systems in one country.

“The signing of the NHI Bill finally fulfills the nurses’ pledge of services which, in parts, say, “The total health of my patients will be my first consideration”, and “I will not permit consideration of religion, nationality, race or social standing to intervene between my duty and my patient.” The signing of the Bill also fulfills Section 27 (1)(a) of the country’s Constitution, which says “everyone has the right to have access to healthcare services, including reproductive healthcare.”

Adding his voice to the signing of the Bill, General Secretary of South African Medical Association Trade Union (SAMATU), Dr Cedric Sihlangu says critics of the NHI, which he says is largely made up of the middle class, speak against the Act in order to preserve their privilege.

He says it is business that is driving fear mongering about the possible exodus of doctors due to the Bill becoming law. Sihlangu says there are many doctors who are willing to stay and fight for the improvement of healthcare in the country.

“What you find in terms of healthcare spend in the country, which is approaching 9% of GDP, is that the private healthcare sector is highly subsidised by the state, it spends equal to what we spend on 80% of the population and its only servicing 14%. We need to pull the resources together so that they serve everyone. ”


Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana says government has a plan to fund the National Health Insurance (NHI),

He says the act has provisions for how it should be funded.

Godongwana says National Treasury will engage the Health Ministry on how to proceed with its implementation.