Understanding Public Health: Exploratory notes

Understanding Public Health: Exploratory Notes Note 1: Public Health Budget and Expenditure Trends Public health Funding Background 30.3.17

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Policy and its (failed) implementation

Jodi Wishnia February 2017   South Africa, like many middle income countries, has robust and technically sound policies but struggles with their implementation. In my opinion, the first step to understanding how the Life Esidimeni crisis and many other similar incidents happened, is to understand the disjuncture between policy and its implementation. Using the Life […]

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Bad Apples and a Just Culture

Gary Kantor February 2017 It’s tempting to conclude that MEC Mahlangu, Dr Selebano and Dr Manamela are the sole culprits in this distressing affair. After all, to quote Professor Makgoba, their “fingerprints” are “peppered throughout the project”.  This would be comforting, for if we simply get rid of the culprits – those who are to […]

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Industry Update: Demarcation Update

1.  Introduction This document has been prepared by Insight Actuaries and Consultants (Insight). The document outlines the key points of the demarcation agreement between medical schemes and health insurance offerings. The document also includes a brief history on demarcation. 2.  Regulation Definitions Health insurance benefits are usually stipulated as a cash sum that is either […]

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Magical mommy kisses and the meaning effect

Having a seven-year old son means an almost endless series of grazes, knocks and bruises. My go-to response is to kiss it better. Even though he is rapidly shrugging off believing in Santa Claus and the tooth fairy (“it’s a tooth mouse mom, fairies don’t exist”), both he and I happily participate in the illusion […]

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The Signal Model: Throwing Light into Dark Corners

Murky territory Have you ever tried to compare the value-for-money that you get from two different medical scheme options? Whether you’re a consumer trying to choose an option, a broker advising clients or a technical marketing actuary, you will know that it is impossible to come to an objective conclusion by simply studying the benefit […]

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Why Actuaries Need “Street View”

I remember playing with Google Maps for the first time. It was startling to get a zoomed-out view of your neighbourhood, your city, your country. In business-school speak this is the view from 30 000 feet. And this is the view that being an actuary affords you. We have the ability to look at the patterns […]

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It’s Complicated

The first round of public hearings held by the Health Market Inquiry during February and March of this year have, at the same time, been both fascinating and frustrating to watch. I certainly don’t envy the panel members. There is an enormous amount of information to process. This includes thousands of pages of written submissions, […]

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Round one of the HMI: Interpreting X-rays

Shivani Ranchod 11 March 2016   The first round of public hearings for the Competition Commission Health Market Inquiry (HMI) wrap up today. For those of us who have been obsessively following the proceedings it will be a relief to have a break before the next round. As one commentator tweeted: “Spellbound”. It has been […]

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Truvada: holy grail or poisoned chalice?

Guest post by Leigh Johnson On Tuesday, 8 December 2015, South Africa’s Medicines Control Council approved the use of Truvada for HIV prevention. Truvada, a combination of two antiretroviral agents, has been shown to be effective in preventing acquisition of HIV in people who take the drug regularly. It is one of two drugs commonly […]

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