Special Reports:

National Health Insurance

< Back to special reports

The National Health Insurance (NHI), for which membership will be compulsory, is a funding scheme that aims to address healthcare inequity in South Africa. The scheme will do this by creating a fund that the government will use to buy healthcare services at set fees from accredited public and private health providers. The NHI Act was signed into law on 15 May 2024 but before it will come into effect, Parliament will need to enact further legislation (including ones providing for its funding).

HomeSpecial ReportsNational Health InsuranceHealth Beat #9 | Cancer and the NHI: Will patients see better...

Health Beat #9 | Cancer and the NHI: Will patients see better treatment?

  • Almost 3 000 people with prostate, breast, cervical and colon cancer are waiting for radiation treatment at Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital in Johannesburg.
  • The head of that hospital department says even if they had more radiation equipment, they wouldn’t be able to use them, because there’s not even enough staff to operate the current number of machines. That’s why they can’t get patients on radiation fast enough.
  • In this episode of our monthly television show, Health Beat, we visit hospitals with two cancer patients – and compare the help that state and private facilities offer. Mia Malan asks an activist and the head of the National Health Insurance if the scheme can fix our broken health system.

Why do middle-class South Africans get emotional about the National Health Insurance? Find out from Mia Malan and Mohale Moloi in our newsletter.

  • Read the full script here

Mia Malan is the founder and editor-in-chief of Bhekisisa. She has worked in newsrooms in Johannesburg, Nairobi and Washington, DC, winning more than 30 awards for her radio, print and television work.

Jessica Pitchford is Bhekisisa's TV and multimedia editor. She's been a journalist since the early nineties and has reported on some pivotal events in South Africa’s political history, such as the country’s transition to democracy and the work of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission.

Mohale Moloi worked at Bhekisisa as a television producer and health journalist from July 2021 to March 2024.

Yolanda Mdzeke is a multimedia reporter at Bhekisisa.

Dylan Bush was a health journalist at Bhekisisa from February 2016 to September 2023.