Healthcare tariffs condemned

COMMUNITY Working Group on Health executive director Itai Rusike is worried with the way the Association of Healthcare Funders of Zimbabwe imposed new tariffs without consulting stakeholders.
In a press statement released on Sunday, the AHFoZ increased the fees for doctors, dentists and all other healthcare service providers by 40 percent and hospital fees by 30 percent effective from yesterday.
In an interview, Rusike said the other parties interests should have been considered before taking such measures.
“Sadly, there was no one to represent public interest during the negotiations for the upward tariff review, so that they could make input on the charges that they are prepared to pay.
“The medical aid societies are now neglecting their main goal of providing affordable health services, securing their interest through the fees.
“Also, sadly the doctors are prepared to accept the increase, which is as well securing their interests.
He added:
“Charging exorbitant fee will make Zimbabwe fail to achieve its national health and targets, goals and international commitments such as Universal Health Coverage.”
The strategy to increase health service fees was to cater for service provider groups who require foreign currency for their day-to-day operations.

12 February 2019
Esther Madambi and Fiona Ruzha