Where is Discovery’s backbone?


Adriaan Gore and Discovery are one of the biggest players in the medical sector.

Gore admits the proposed National Health Insurance (NHI) in its current form is unaffordable and probably unattainable, and that there are grounds for lawsuits over rationality.

He says medical aid members will pay 31% more tax and they will get 69% less benefits. According to Discovery, R531 billion is needed for the NGV.

Solidarity’s cost analysis confirms that the country’s budget deficit will increase by R300 billion if the NGV is implemented. Taxes will have to rise dramatically.

Then Mr. Gore says that they are not going to aggressively oppose it or go to court over it.

Rather, they are going to talk constructively with the government.

Mr. Gore, the ruling ANC is not appeasable. This is their ideology. Ideology does not take reality into account.

The same party that wants to appease you has voted in favor of the NGV in the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces.

Their ideology is state centralization. This is not constructive talk.

It is this ideology that nearly destroyed the public health care system. It is this ideology that has destroyed public services in general and is turning off our lights.

It’s the same destructive ideology that underpins the NGV. Amendment of a single article by speaking nicely is not the answer. It is either naive, or a selfish attempt to save the role of medical funds.

The NGV patient is terminally ill and modifying his medication regimen by prescribing a strong pain pill is not going to make the patient well.

The NGV is not rational, it is unimplementable and unaffordable. The core is wrong and it cannot be trimmed right.

It is constitutionally untenable and is simply illegal. It takes away freedom and turns people into state spies. People are handed over to the government and to central medical planning. The history of the world is littered with the corpses of failed central planning systems.

With all due respect, Mr. Gore, why should others go to court to protect your core business – good health care? Why should others fight the hard battles when you simply want to protect political relationships?

There is a misunderstanding somewhere about what is constructive. Someone who goes to court over an unconstitutional system is precisely constructive.

They stand up for what is right. A government that recklessly centralizes power is deconstructive and breaks down our constitutional dispensation. Someone who does not want to go to court, but wants to settle for small amendments, is not exactly constructive for the larger society either.

There is an answer for our healthcare system. This is the exact opposite of what the NGV intends. Private medical care and medical funds must be enabled to provide as many services as possible to relieve the pressure on the public system.

The less state, the better. Rather, it will enable the state to fix public health care, to which everyone has access.

The state is already failing in the delivery of public health care; more government in the total delivery of health care is therefore not the answer.

Discovery and co need to get a backbone and stand up for what is right and not for what is politically correct.

Solidarity goes to court. Our legal team is already hard at work on pieces. We will constructively fight an unconstitutional dispensation. In the process we will be happy to enter into discussions with the government. Talking and fighting often go together. Appeasement alone is not going to work.

The entire health sector (including Discovery) must unanimously say “no” to the government’s health care plans. We can see all around us why they must be stopped.