Updated 25 October 2018

Treasury commits R350m to beef up staff at public health facilities

Treasury is reprioritising R500m to boost the public health sector, R350m of which is being used to recruit more than 2 000 health professionals for public health facilities.

National Treasury would immediately reprioritise R350m to recruit more than 2 000 health professionals for public health facilities, newly appointed Finance Minister Tito Mboweni said on Wednesday.

Mboweni, delivering the Medium Term Budget Policy Speech for 2018, also said R150m will be reprioritised for the purchasing of beds and linens for hospitals because there is a dire need.

"Access to healthcare services is enshrined in our Constitution and in our Bill of Rights. We are immediately reprioritising R350 million to recruit in excess of 2000 health professionals into public health facilities.

"We are further reprioritising R150m to purchase beds and linen for hospitals where the need is most dire. These two interventions build on the Presidential Health Summit convened last weekend, which has brought new focus to improving the quality of healthcare," said Mboweni.

Mboweni mentioned that President Cyril Ramaphosa said that one, of a few, measures to stimulate the economy is to address the urgent and pressing matters in health and that's what Treasury aims to do.

He added that Treasury will work closely with the Health Department to ensure that the National Health Insurance's (NHI) phases of implementation will be "adequately financed".