The ALP made a submission to the KZN Health Department regarding draft of the Kwazulu-Natal Health Care Bill, 2007. In our view, the KZN Bill has the potential to complement the broad legislative framework provided by the National Health Act, 2003. In particular, it has the potential to provide much of the needed detail in respect of which the Act expressly authorises the provinces to legislate, thereby enabling provincial and local government authorities to render health care services in accordance with the needs of the people of KZN.
Yet in certain respects, the KZN Bill seeks to go beyond the express mandate assigned by the Act. In others, it does not go far enough in discharging the obligations as set out in the Act. Our primary concern, therefore, is that if passed in its current form, the KZN Bill may arguably conflict with the Act in a manner contemplated by section 146 of the Constitution. Simply put, the KZN Bill raises constitutional concerns by unnecessarily departing from or narrowing the broad framework provided by the Act. In so doing, it risks undermining the manner in which the Act and the Constitution contemplated the provision of provincial health care services.