Healthcare in South Africa is in crisis. Indiscriminate state intervention, under funding and over regulation have resulted in poor service delivery in the public system, failing state capacity, poor morale, a massive shortage of skilled staff and pressure on the private sector to remove the inequities and imbalances in the two tier system. Because of failing state capacity, and in an endeavour to make private services more affordable to enable more state responsibility patients to be accommodated in the private sector, pricing of private sector services have come under pressure.
The ANC has determined to proceed with a system of National Health Insurance (NHI). For some e.g. COSATU, this has meant a unitary system with one payer, the state. However current fiscal challenges mitigate against an NHI being able to provide access to quality healthcare for all, and there is an erroneous view held in some quarters, that closing down the private sector will release private sector funding for use by the state.
Nevertheless the private sector is resource and manpower rich and can play a valuable role in improving access to health care services for all the citizens of South Africa-if allowed to do so. Currently however the private sector is dangerously under-remunerated as evidenced by the recent cost studies.
The SAPPF has been established to protect and defend the role of the private sector in what has become an extremely hostile and volatile environment, to strive for and ensure appropriate and realistic pricing for private professional services, and to facilitate where necessary, the re-engineering of the private sector, to make over all costs more affordable, thereby rendering private care more accessible.
Therefore the SAPPF,
Acknowledging the inequities and disparities that exist currently in the two tier system of healthcare, and understanding the current debate focused on finding workable solutions to funding a future healthcare system in which quality healthcare services are made accessible to all,
To proactively and collectively, investigate, explore, and develop, future models of healthcare delivery, aimed at ultimately achieving a sustainable system of universal access, within the limits of affordability, in which the private sector plays an indispensable role.
That change towards an equitable system of universal access will take time, and an improvement in state expenditure, and that various NHI models exist in different parts of the world, therefore believes that a locally developed hybrid, incorporating what is best from our current system, is more likely to achieve success than the doctrinaire application of outdated and foreign ideologies,
To cooperate with other stakeholders including the State, in developing a pragmatic, appropriately funded and resourced, healthcare service, best able to utilise, incentivise and retain healthcare workers for the ultimate good of all South Africans.