A critique – comparing South African private hospital prices internationally
A critique – comparing South African private hospital prices internationally Nina Baltes
In 2015, the health division of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the South African country office of the World Health Organization (WHO) published a paper on a comparison of South African private sector hospital prices and hospital price levels in selected OECD countries as OECD Health Working Paper No. 85. The Working Paper concludes that private hospital services are less affordable in South Africa than in the OECD comparator countries. The paper is referenced in the South African government’s White Paper on National Health Insurance (NHI) and was submitted to the Competition Commission in the context of the market inquiry into the private healthcare sector for presentation.
With argumentative weaknesses and methodological flaws of the OECD HWP 85 having received little attention, Scenarium conducted a critical assessment in collaboration with seasoned sector experts. The intention of the exercise was to contribute constructively to a rational discourse. This work was undertaken on behalf of Mediclinic, a private hospital group operating in Southern Africa.
The Scenarium team’s expertise and research capabilities in health policy and systems has been valuable to our organisation. The team has professionally delivered in-depth research and insight by way of an enlightening “study tour” of the German healthcare system and a critical assessment of the OECD HWP No. 85 comparing South African private hospital prices internationally. These projects, among others, have benefited our organisation’s understanding of and engagement in policy debates around the dynamics of healthcare systems, including quality and cost management, hospital financing and reimbursement.
Roly Buys, Executive – Strategy Development, Mediclinic Southern Africa
Lizelle Alexander, Senior Health Policy Research Analyst, Mediclinic Southern Africa