The South African two tiered healthcare system continues to provide significantly divergent standards of healthcare, with rampant private sector spending (12-15% pa) providing world class healthcare to under only 20% of the population, mirrored with an underdeveloped public sector unable to provide sufficient quality care to the broader population, compounded with significant burden of disease, shortfall in human resources and poor institutional management, policy and delivery, amongst others.
Government response is the development of the “10-Point Plan”, which aims to reform the entire health care management, financial and delivery system, with the ultimate introduction of National Health Insurance (NHI). With this comes significant increase in investment and regulatory reform, with public sector spending alone increasing from R63B in 2007/08, R113B in 2011/12 to over R140B by 2014. Within this is specific allocation in 2012 of R2.9B to improve quality in health facilities, medical and hospital systems to bring public sector hospitals to a comparable standard to the private sector. This investment is expected to continue as all public sector institutions are brought to par. Total health spend could reach R350B by 2014, a CAGR of over 15%, approximately 3B USD per year!
The South African Healthcare industry will continue to grow, driven by undying government support for universal coverage (delivered through NHI), and consumers who have an insatiable desire to improve their health and demand for innovative therapies. As health technologies (encompassing medicines, medical devices and health related technologies) are predominantly imported, this represents a fantastic opportunity for health technology suppliers to position themselves as part of the health care strategy of South Africa, and understanding market access hurdles will provide easier navigation.
BRANDTECH Healthcare Technology Consulting cc, a Strategy and Market Access consultancy, provides companies in South Africa, or seeking to enter South Africa, a resource for business development and effectively navigating market access hurdles, at any stage of the business and product life cycle.