COVID-19 rollout: Private-sector still waitng on Department of Health


The National Department of Health has yet to finalise a pricing structure for COVID-19 vaccines for the private sector, leaving medical schemes and healthcare providers unsure how to make financial provision for the rollout, reported BusinessLIVE (20 April 2021)

Although Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said medical scheme members will be expected to help pay for the rollout to non-members, the Medical Schemes Act restricts payments to scheme members.

The following has not been finalised

Accredited private sector vaccination sites will be paid an administration fee to cover professional fees and the cost of consumables, and will be reimbursed by medical schemes, but these costs are still being calculated;

The DoH received 24 bids to provide transport, warehousing and distribution services for COVID-19 vaccines, but has yet to award the tender;

The following is still not clear:

How much the price paid by medical schemes will differ from the price the government pays to vaccine suppliers;

How the fees payable to healthcare providers will be pegged; and

How private healthcare providers, such as pharmacies, are to be compensated for dispensing vaccines to state patients.

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