‘NHIS will not be affected by disgruntled nurses’

Minister Aaron Motsoaledi says South Africa has no choice but to ensure that the scheme succeeds.

Nurses sing and raise their hands during a march by hundreds of nurses from across the country in central Pretoria for better pay and working conditions. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi's office says the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) will not be affected by disgruntled nurses and other healthcare workers, adding that South Africa has no choice but to ensure that the scheme succeeds.

Yesterday, hundreds of nurses took to the streets of Pretoria, calling for Motsoaledi to improve their working conditions and give them better pay.

Nurses from hospitals across Gauteng say government is not doing enough to encourage them to stay in the public health sector, forcing them to find jobs in the private sector.

In addition, the South African Medical Association (Sama) has indicated that at least 70 percent of healthcare professionals in South Africa work in the private sector, which serves only 16 percent of the population.

The remaining 30 percent is expected to take care of the rest of the country.

The Young Nurses Indaba convenor Lerato Gova says the Health Department needs to do a lot of introspection before implementing the NHIS.

WATCH: Nurses say 'no' to current working conditions & wages