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SAMJ: South African Medical Journal

versión On-line ISSN 2078-5135
versión impresa ISSN 0256-9574


SOLANKI, G C et al. South African healthcare reforms towards universal healthcare - where to next?. SAMJ, S. Afr. med. j. [online]. 2024, vol.114, n.3, pp.13-16. ISSN 2078-5135.

The National Assembly approval of the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill represents an important milestone, but there are many uncertainties concerning its implementation and timeline. The challenges faced by the South African healthcare system are huge, and we cannot afford to wait for NHI to address them all. It is critical that the process of strengthening the health system to advance universal healthcare (UHC) begins now, and there are several viable initiatives that can be implemented without delay. This article examines potential scenarios after the Bill is passed and ways in which UHC could be advanced. It begins with an overview of the trajectory of health system reform since 1994, then examines the scenarios that may emerge once the Bill is passed by Parliament and makes a case for finding ways in which UHC could be advanced within the country, regardless of any legal or financial barriers that may delay or limit NHI implementation.

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