PSA warns NHI cannot take away public servants’ medical aid

PSA warns NHI cannot take away public servants’ medical aid

The Public Servants Association says it's disappointed that President Cyril Ramaphosa plans to sign the National Health Insurance Bill into law without addressing critical issues.

Hospital Beds / Pexels
Hospital Beds / Pexels

Spokesperson Ruben Maleka says that while they support the idea of universal health coverage, they have many questions, particularly how NHI will be funded.

"We are concerned that it should not be funded through an increased value-added tax or even income tax that will also cause a huge burden to most of the public servants and general works of the country. We don't believe that the current public health facility resources are adequate to be able to cover the NHI."  

Maleka says they also support a dual public-private healthcare system for the country.

READ: HASA: Signing NHI Bill into law a huge mistake

"South Africans believe that they should be able to procure private health - they should be given that opportunity. If it is found that the intention is also to take away GEMS (Government Employees Medical Scheme)or medical aid for public servants, the PSA will have to approach members, and we will have to protect their rights through ordinary court processes." 

The president is due to make the bill law at the Union Buildings on Wednesday afternoon. 

The government says the NHI's objective is to provide universal access to quality health care for all South Africans.

Several groups who are opposed to it say they are launching legal challenges.

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