Don’t cancel medical aid now – health financiers

Henry

The Council on Health Financiers (RGF) appealed to South Africans not to, after pres. Cyril Ramaphosa’s signing of the Health Insurance Act, to summarily cancel their medical funds.

The council says the signing does not have an immediate effect on membership of a medical fund. “It is business as usual and medical funds continue to enable access to healthcare services.”

Although the NGV is now law, this does not mean that the entire law is suddenly brought into operation.

“By canceling their medical funds, South Africans will leave themselves vulnerable and will not have cover for a medical emergency.”

The council also does not believe that the legislation in its current format is sufficient to achieve universal health care, as the government says it intends to do with it.

The RGF will turn to the court to, among other things, art. 33 of the National Health Insurance Act. The council argues that this is unconstitutional and unlawful and must be challenged in court to ensure the sustainability of the medical aid industry in the future.

“The RGF’s main aim is to ensure the sustainability of the healthcare sector and this includes allowing medical funds, care organizations and administrators to enable accessible, affordable quality healthcare for medical fund members.”

In the long term, the legislation aims to reduce medical funds to a “supplementary” financing role.

“The RGF is of the opinion that medical schemes are a national asset and must play a significant role in enabling access to healthcare services now and in the future.”