Let's solve health problems before they occur‚ says Aaron Motsoaledi

22 June 2018 - 12:47 By Nomahlubi Jordaan
Dr Aaron Motsoaledi. File photo.
Dr Aaron Motsoaledi. File photo.
Image: KEVIN SUTHERLAND 09/06/2009

Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi wants the law to be changed to allow the national department to deal with problems before they occur‚ rather than dealing with them when the damage has already been done.

“We want to make laws that help us deal with problems before they happen. Currently‚ the law says you must deal with issues when they happen‚” Motsoaledi said during an interview on Radio 702.

He said the department was faced with problems at a provincial level. The issues were in areas of human resources‚ financial management and procurement.

“At a national level you develop norms and standards and implementation is at a provincial level. We are proposing amendments to change that‚” Motsoaledi said.

Commenting on the proposed National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme‚ he said his intention was to facilitate good quality healthcare for all South Africans.

“We have two healthcare systems in the country. One is the private healthcare system which caters for 16% of the population and the other one is the public healthcare system which caters for 84%. We want to open access to both healthcare systems‚” Motsoaledi said in the Friday broadcast.

On Thursday‚ Motsoaledi announced a number of changes to the Medical Schemes Amendment Act. These include the eradication of co-payments for medical aid members when medical aids do not cover their full doctor or hospital bills. Motsoaledi also announced that vaccinations‚ primary and preventative care and contraceptives had to be paid for by medical aids‚ which generally do not cover preventative healthcare. The bill also proposes the abolishment of medical aid brokers.

He said the department wanted to create synergy between the two healthcare systems.

“We want all South Africans to be able to use all facilities in both the public and private healthcare systems. It will serve us well if we have both systems.”