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Wednesday, 06 July 2022 21:25

SA records 657 new COVID-19 cases with 3 related deaths.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), reports 657 new COVID-19 cases that have been identified in South Africa, which brings the total number of laboratory-confirmed cases to 3 996 441.

The majority of new cases today are from Gauteng (51%) followed by Western Cape (15%). KwaZulu-Natal accounted for 14%; Eastern Cape and Mpumalanga each accounted for 5% respectively; Free State and North West each accounted for 4% respectively; Limpopo and Northern Cape each accounted for 1% of today’s cases.

This increase represents a 4.8% positivity rate.

The proportion of positive new cases/total new tested today is (4,8%), and is higher than yesterday (3,7%). The 7-day average is (4,0%) today, and is higher than yesterday (3,9%). The 7-day moving average daily number of cases has increased.

Today, the NDoH reports 12 deaths, and of these, 3 occurred in the past 24 – 48 hours. This brings the total fatalities to 101,859 to date.

Globally, there have been 547 901 157 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 6 339 899 deaths, reported to the World Health Organisation. 

Meanwhile Professional services firm PwC has conducted a deep dive into how Covid-19 impacted South Africa’s healthcare industry and how the incoming National Healthcare Insurance (NHI) will change its landscape.

The objective of the NHI is to provide universal access to quality health care for all South Africans as enshrined in the constitution.

PwC said its healthcare consulting team assessed the state and future prospects of South Africa’s healthcare industry while it underwent this period of immense transformation. The group said it surveyed 31 C-suite leaders of South African healthcare public, private and donor organisations by conducting in-depth interviews and online digital surveys.

The assessment was aimed at understanding the biggest risks, threats and opportunities facing healthcare organisations, identifying the biggest industry innovations and disruptions expected in the next five years, and Covid-19’s impact.

Five key insights emerged from this survey:

- National Health Insurance (NHI) will revolutionise South Africa’s healthcare landscape and create opportunities for public-private collaboration and innovation.

- The Covid-19 pandemic has rapidly transformed the outlook of healthcare organisations in terms of their preparedness and resilience measures.

- The future of healthcare is brighter than ever with innovation and technical disruption progressing in leaps and bounds.

- The healthcare industry needs an increased focus on Environmental, Social, Governance (ESG) initiatives and measurements.

- Cybersecurity is critical for all organisations and is becoming an increased threat as data volumes increase.

Will NHI improve health outcomes?

The National Health Insurance (NHI) is a healthcare financing system designed to pool funds to provide universal access to quality, affordable healthcare services for all South Africans and long-term residents.

More than half of the respondents thought that the NHI would likely not improve South Africa’s health outcomes in its early phases. Similarly, half felt that it will achieve or partially achieve its objectives, PwC said.

However, public trust in the healthcare system and the NHI governance has to be achieved first and considerable change management across the public and private sectors will be required.

Respondents also felt that unless stakeholder relationships are managed carefully and well before the rollout, there may be hesitation from all stakeholders due to a lack of transparency and communication.

"The right mix of skills and people will also be critical to the success of the NHI, including healthcare workers and personnel at all levels. Collaboration and dialogue with healthcare workers are critical to preventing the loss of key talent from South Africa, as healthcare workers and their buy-in into the NHI will form the backbone of the healthcare delivery," said PwC.