Cancer and the NHI: Cost Constraints and Opportunities

| February 2010 | Type: |

With the advent of the AIDS epidemic and given South Africa’s quadruple burden of disease as discussed in NHI Note 2, cancer is not often mentioned as being of great importance in the provision of healthcare. The reality is however that cancer is a leading cause of death in South Africa; with indications being that the specific issues relating to the domestic situation might be underestimating the magnitude of the problem. This research note provides an important case study of how the prevalence, detection and cost of treatment of an illness like cancer may increase under a NHI with comprehensive cover. It also illustrates the potential efficiency gains and savings associated with public/private partnerships, by referring to an example of such a partnership in South Africa.