The Bill, unvelied by Minister Motsoaledi at a press conference, seeks to amend the Medical Schemes Act, 1998 (Act No.131 of 1998), in order to align with the National Health Insurance White Paper and the National Health Insurance Bill.
In his presentation, the Minister said:" The first reason for this amendment is that the implementation of NHI is not going to be a once-off event but it will take place in a phased-in approach. While this is happening the population of medical schemes beneficiaries need immediate relief from serious challenges experienced in the current medical scheme regime. The nature and magnitude of the challenges is that it will be undesirable for medical scheme beneficiaries to have to wait for long term changes".
The Minister add that the second reason for the amendment is to align the medical scheme environment to that which will exist under NHI so that there is a smooth, harmonious transition that does not unduly disrupt access to health care