+ The right to health

The newly formed National Health Insurance Coalition (NHIC) gives civil society voice on National Health Insurance

National Health Insurance holds the potential to drastically improve health care across South Africa; civil society is organising to secure its success.

Key members of civil society recently formed the National Health Insurance Coalition (NHIC) to collectively respond to and help develop National Health Insurance (NHI). The NHIC also intends to jointly endorse key submissions on NHI, encourage civil society participation in the NHI policy process and launch an advocacy campaign, among other things.

This week, the NHIC published a discussion document to facilitate exchange over the Green Paper on NHI. On 7 – 8 December 2011 the Department of Health (DoH) held an international consultation on NHI, during this consultation the NHIC held a successful side meeting to discuss the way forward.

To inquire about the National Health Insurance Coalition or join our efforts email: coordinator@phmsouthafrica.org. We can go far together.

The 7th meeting of the BEMF

The 7th meeting of the Budget and Expenditure Monitoring Forum was held on 21 and 22 November 2011 in Johannesburg. The purpose of the meeting was to develop a clear picture of where South Africa is at in terms of…

TAC and SECTION27 release the first issue of our magazine: NSP Review

On World AIDS Day 2011 TAC and SECTION27 launched the first issue of their joint publication, the NSP Review. In this, and in future issues, we aim to provide quality analysis and monitoring of the implementation of the new NSP. It is our hope that this publication will increase awareness of, and critical engagement with the NSP. We will try to keep it relevant with evidence from new research and feedback from the various district offices of the Treatment Action Campaign as well as organisations with which we work closely. Our vision is a vibrant, evidence-based publication that will help all stake holders drive a more successful response to HIV, STIs and TB.

We encourage you to get in touch with us should you want to contribute to future editions of NSP Review.

You can e-mail the editor at nsp@tac.org.za nsp@tac/org.za.

Open letter to HIVEX limited from SECTION27 and the Treatment Action Campaign

Today, World Aids Day 2011, the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) and SECTION27 submit this open letter and make the following demands to HIVEX Limited (HIVEX). Despite the lack of any scientific evidence that HIVEX treatment is an effective treatment for HIV, HIVEX continues to promote and provide it for this purpose.

It is unlawful and deeply unethical to advertise that HIVEX is an effective treatment for HIV in the absence of such evidence. Antiretroviral treatment remains the only treatment that is scientifically proven to be effective against HIV.

High Court rules in favour of the Medicines Control Council


On 15 November 2011 the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria ruled in favour of the Medicines Control Council (MCC) and others in a matter concerning Adcock Ingram’s resistance to the MCC’s decision to cancel the registration of drugs containing dextropropoxyphene (DPP). The MCC made the decision in April 2011 after coming to the conclusion that the drugs pose a danger to the public. Previously the state attorney, purporting to act on behalf of the MCC and others, entered into a settlement with Adcock Ingram that allowed the company to continue selling the drugs. This settlement was made an order of court. On 15 November 2011 the court set aside the settlement.

The case is important because it has resulted in the removal of products from the market that the MCC and other stringent drug regulatory authorities have deemed unsafe. Importantly, it reaffirms the MCC’s statutory and constitutional duties to protect public health by ensuring that medicines are safe and basing its decisions on the available evidence. The judgment rightly places the health and safety of the public over profits of the pharmaceutical company. company.