Health care system

Health Consultative Meeting Report: 12-13 November 1999

Published by: 
Health Systems Trust
The consultative meeting was convened after discussions between the Minister of Health and the Director General and Chairpersons of legislative Health Committees in the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). The meeting was held on 12th and 13th November 1999, at the Days Inn, Cape Town

Traditional Healers

Series Name: 
HST Update
Published by: 
Health Systems Trust
Should traditional healers be recognised as part of the health care delivery system? This controversy rages on and is a long way from being answered. The Valley Trust has considerable experience in the field. In the first 30 years of the organisations existence up to 1980, a stance of non-interference in the affairs of traditional practitioners was taken. In 1980 a number of these practitioners volunteered to be part of the new Community Health Worker (CHW) or Community Based Health Education (CBHE) programme. This was the start of a much closer association between the Valley Trust and Traditional Healers.

Equity

Series Name: 
HST Update
Published by: 
Health Systems Trust

Parents are usually instinctively aware of any of their children who are particularly vulnerable and if they are able to, take the time and trouble to give that child a bit of extra support and extra care. If we are to promote equity in our society we have to find ways of ensuring that our most vulnerable communities and individuals have access to more resources than those who are less needy. Only by doing so will the huge gaps between the haves and the have nots be lessened.

The changing role of the clinic nurse

Series Name: 
HST Update
Published by: 
Health Systems Trust

Since the first group of nurses was trained in clinical health assessment, treatment and care in 1982, South Africa has come a long way. Not only has the government policy declared nurses the backbone of the health care system in South Africa, but also there has been a major shift in health care from a mainly hospital based to a mainly primary health care focussed health care service.

The Integration of Health Services

Series Name: 
HST Update
Published by: 
Health Systems Trust
The Department of Health adopted the district health system as the vehicle to render primary health care in 1995/6. This policy is reflected, inter alia, in the White Paper on the Transformation of the National Health System published in April 1997. In addition, the view that local government should govern health districts as capacity is developed at municipal level, was also expressed a few years ago and continues to be the policy of the Department. The link between local government and health districts is a logical one given the need for local accountability, the importance of community participation and the need to meet local health needs. These and other principles are listed in the district health system policy document published towards the end of 1995. In addition, the Constitution makes provision for municipalities to render various services, either as delegated or assigned functions or, as in the case of municipal health services, as core functions.

District Health Expenditure Review - Mount Currie Health District

Published by: 
Health Systems Trust

Introduction

This report documents the findings and conclusions of the first district expenditure review run for the Mt. Currie health district. The year under review is the government financial year, April 1997 to March 1998. Mt. Currie is a health district bordering on the Eastern Cape, in the southernmost part of the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) province. Its close proximity to the Eastern Cape border, and the regions geography, have meant that the main towns in the district, Kokstad and Matatiele, have for years acted as commercial centres for rural areas extending into the Eastern Cape, or what was formerly known as the Transkei. This fact, together with the history of the regions administration, means that the health services in the district are well frequented by residents of the Eastern Cape. These cross-border flows made it essential to calculate the district catchment population, which was estimated at 247 537 people in 1997/98.

A full range of health services are rendered in the district, including primary health care services, environmental health services, district hospital level services and laboratory services. A number of health services to the district are still run directly by the province, or the regional office. In addition, as in many districts, there are two main public sector authorities running health services namely local governments (municipalities) and the KZN provincial government. The two local authorities in the district are Matatiele and Kokstad.

No Transport, No Primary Health Care! Monitoring and improving the use of health service vehicles

Published by: 
Health Systems Trust
In the Mount Frere Health District, the District Management Team (DMT) has made considerable improvements in the control and monitoring of vehicles. However, despite this, there is a common cry from programme managers, clinic supervisors, doctors and administrative staff that there is a shortage of transport for them to carry out their functions adequately. Because transport is so critical to so many functions, it is not surprising that there is a relative lack of transport, compared to needs. It is therefore important that districts make sure that they use their limited transport resources efficiently and effectively.